Today's daily devotion

The Comforter Has Come

I will not leave you comfortless…—JOHN 14:18 (KJV)

I was having lunch in a small West Virginia diner when I noticed an elderly man in high-bib overalls and a blue plaid flannel shirt at the cash register. He didn’t know me by name, but we’d talked a few times at antiques shops in town. I’d heard he’d been battling cancer and was receiving chemo.

I don’t know what came over me, but I got out of my chair at the big round table and walked up to him. “I’m Roberta,” I told him, “and I know you’ve been going through a rough patch.”

The man pointed to an old-timey coffee grinder on the diner wall. “They don’t make things like they used to, do they?” he said.

I took in the gentle curve of his withered lips. “They don’t make smiles like yours anymore, either.” And then the words out of my mouth astonished me. “Could you use a hug?”

He opened his arms wide and a huge smile filled his face. “A hug? Why, I exist on hugs!”

Scientists have even studied the comforting power of hugs. When we share a hug, our body releases oxytocin, which is sometimes referred to as the “cuddle hormone.” It increases happiness, and lowers stress and pain. I’ve decided to make hugs a part of all of my caregiving. They’re one of the best ways to communicate the love of the one who promises to never leave us comfortless.

Let hugs find us in our caregiving today, dear Father.

Adapted from
Strength & Grace Magazine

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