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One night, after service, I sat in a pew listening to worship music. It was a large church and many people were basking in the presence of God and talking to each other. As I sat in a pew, an Asian lady came and stood next to me. She just stood there for some time and I began to feel that I should put my arm around her. Now, I was in a very strict Pentecostal church and even a side hug with the opposite sex was considered risque. However, I obeyed and put my arm around her.

She was short and so my arm went around her lower back as I held her waist. To my surprise she stood there and even seemed to edge a bit closer. Neither one of us said a word to each other. I held her for about 15 minutes and then I sensed it was OK to let go. After a while she left. I did not even know her name (it was a very large church.)

About a week later, in church again, the same lady came up to me with tears in her eyes. She said, “do you remember when you hugged me last week?” I said, “”Yes” She said, “that night I was going to go down to the dock by the ocean, wrap myself in a bed sheet, and kill myself because I believed nobody loved me.” “when you put your arm around me,” she continued, “I felt that God knew about me and I felt His love for me.” She hugged me and said “thank you.”

People sometimes think that God does not know what they are really going through, what they are really feeling, and the troubles that they really face. God does, however, really love you, understands you and your circumstances, and is closer than you might imagine. I urge everyone to allow Got to reach out and touch the lives of those around them so that others may feel His love through you.