Outstretched arms.


Have you ever had a person close to you begin to distance themselves from you? 

Or have you experienced a friend betray you and lie to you even though you were willing to accept them no matter the answer? 
Or possibly you have watched your parents be hurtful to one another, piercing each other with words, slowly breaking your heart to the point of physical pain? 
I’m not sure which one strikes a chord with your heart, maybe all of them seem strikingly familiar and almost painful to read. 
I felt this feeling recently where someone I deeply loved was distancing themselves from me and I wish I could explain the feeling I felt for those few hours. Yes, hours. It wasn’t all that long before they expressed their feelings to me and I felt at peace with the relationship again. But still, have you felt that way? 
As I struggled in this situation, I started to think about how God feels so often with us. We have moments of weakness where we think we do not need Him. We are self-reliant. We are capable of living without Him. We are successful because of our own abilities.
Right? … Yeahhhhhhh RIGHT! hahahaha to those thoughts is all I have to say! 
But in those moments of arrogance and ignorance, we turn our backs. We become lost children who run until we fall. We are bleeding. We are in pain. And then we are reminded, we simply can’t live without Him. 
Those hours while we were gone, He was still watching over us, loving us, consoling us and praying that we would turn back around and stop being so distant. And when we did? His arms were even wider than before. 
Are we this way with people in our own lives? Do we offer them the same grace when they turn their backs on us, separate us with distance or betray us with words? 
I know I do not always outstretch my arms like I should. Sometimes, I even shrink my wingspan a little bit, signaling to them that I was hurt by their absence and didn’t appreciate their betrayal. 
Oh man, Lord, how silly I am! How small my love must be if one trial makes me shrink my welcome for my friends and family. Jesus, help me to offer the same grace, patience and love to those in my life, no matter how distant they seem or how long they stay gone! 
And thank You for always giving me a bear hug when I turn my back on You. My small mind can not comprehend it but my hurting heart ALWAYS needs it. 
Have someone in your life that needs that outstretched, Jesus kinda bear hug? Don’t be stubborn, open your arms and welcome them back. 

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