We taught the Budster some hand signals. He knows “Come here and I’ll give you a hug,” and “You stay there, I’ll be right back.” When he gets up in the morning and wants to go outside, he comes and tells me. I’ll hold my hands out toward him and wiggle my fingers and he comes closer for a hug. He lowers his head and wags his tail as we hug and hug and love on each other. We have to hug before we go outside. Those are the rule.
The first hug in the morning is the best, isn’t it? It’s full of love and it sets the tone for the day. The last hug at night is good too but it’s a different sort of hug. It’s the one that says, “We had a good day, I’ll see you in the morning.” There’s a lot of love in it with some appreciation mixed in. There are other hugs with different messages. One might be, “It’s okay, I’m here.” Another, “Good job!” and a bunch of “I love you,” ones sprinkled here and there.
This is one of my favorite passages of scriptures.
24 Now Thomas (called Didymus), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 The other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he replied, “Unless I see the wounds from the nails in his hands, and put my finger into the wounds from the nails, and put my hand into his side, I will never believe it!”
26 Eight days later the disciples were again together in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and examine my hands. Extend your hand and put it into my side. Do not continue in your unbelief, but believe.” 28 Thomas replied to him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are the people who have not seen and yet have believed.”
When Thomas didn’t believe that Jesus had risen from the dead, Jesus didn’t rebuke him for his unbelief. He was gentle and merciful to Thomas. Imagine the hug they shared.
I’m looking forward to the first hug after this long night. You know the one that I’m talking about. It’s the hug we get when He says, “Welcome home, my child. Welcome home.”