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Group Hug!

Some days are just like that.  I need a hug; not just a little, "Nice to see you," hug, but a big, giant, "You are loved. We need you," hug.

My heart has been heavy recently over the state of the world.  How many make blithe promises to 'get closer to God' then never carry through.  Others are on a headlong dash to destruction.  Sadder still, so many in the church seem to be on this same downward dive.  There is little desire to separate ourselves from the world and be different.  No one wants to stand out.  Everyone wants to 'blend in,' to be part of the crowd.   We have the white-faced cow mentality. . . find those who are like us and mingle.

I hear the same sermons everyone else does as the gospel is preached, plain and true.  Yet, after the singing of the invitation song, we file out, to do the same things we did last week.  No change in behavior, direction, walk.

Jesus came to the world, born to a poor, pious woman and her hard-working husband.  He walked among men, learning obedience to His Father.  Ultimately, He willingly gave His life as a sacrifice that we might be reunited with our Heavenly Father.  While He was on earth, He stood once, looking over the city of Jerusalem.  He speaks from the depths of His broken heart, "Oh Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who were sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, but you were not willing." Luke 13:34  He, with all His heavenly power, was not able to force anyone to do what was obviously in their best interest, eternally speaking.

We can anguish with our Lord over the same today.  We can see the harm being done to the individual Christian, and ultimately to the church and her influence on the world; not by killing the prophets, but by disregarding the instructions of Christ and by living a worldly life.  It's okay to grieve, to be concerned, to cry, to pray to God.  Sometimes I want a group hug.  But many are saying, "No way, no thanks, don't need this!"  It hurts to be rejected.  But it is worse when we realize it's not *us* but Jesus who is being rejected.  He knows.

Don't give up.  Don't give in.  Ask for that hug anyway.  Pray and work the work of Him who called you.

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