Monday, March 26, 2018
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People who know me know that I'm a very focused person when I'm working on something. Except when it comes to the most distracting people I know-my grandchildren. I remember when my granddaughter was pretty little. She was just one-plus-year-old, there was just no way to resist her when she came my way. She'd pull herself up by my pant leg, she'd stretch her arms my direction, and then she'd make these cute little noises and irresistible faces-virtually begging me to pick her up. I'm not the only one who's gotten nothing done when she was around. No, she was that way with other family members; reaching out to be held. And I'll tell you this: our arms were always open.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Hungry To Be Held."
Sadly, my granddaughter's quest for someone to hold her is a picture of someone who's listening today, except open arms have been hard to find. And when you do, it seems like sooner or later you lose even those who do give you some of the love and attention that you need. Sometimes, you pay a price that's too high to get someone to be there for you; making you vulnerable to being used and being hurt-a mistake that might be all too familiar to you.
I can't forget these children we met at a hospital in Haiti. They were hospitalized early in life because they have tuberculosis or AIDS. We played with them, we sang with them, and we read to them; knowing that they probably didn't understand a word of our English. But as we got ready to leave, the children surrounded us and called out, over and over again, two words they did know in English-words I've never forgotten, "Hold me. Hold me." We gave one last hug, but we couldn't hold them. We had to move on.
The cry of those precious Haitian children is a fundamental cry of every human heart, "Hold me!" But there aren't many hugs that last. Even for those of us who have had someone who really has loved us and made us feel secure, there is still this strange love deficit inside. There's never enough love.
We need someone who will always hold us, who will never let us go, who will never go away. We were made for that kind of love, but we've reached the wrong direction to find the one hug that will always be there. We've been reaching around us to other people. But to find the one we were made to be held by, we need to look up.
Listen to God's words, describing the kind of relationship He wants to have with you. "The Lord your God is with you...He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing" (Zephaniah 3:17). That's intimate love. That's infinite love. That's expensive love. God paid the price for that love.
In Isaiah 49:15-16, our word for today from the Word of God, He says: "Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! See, I have engraved you on the palms of My hands."
For Jesus, that engraving is the nail prints in His hands from the day He died to pay for your sins so you could be forgiven; so you could belong to the one whose love you were made for. Because He walked out of His grave, He's alive. He's offering the greatest love in the universe. But one-way love doesn't make a relationship. He's waiting to hold you, but you have to reach for Him.
God says that means putting your total trust in Jesus to be your personal rescuer from the death penalty for your sins. The wall that's between you and God comes down when you tell Him, "Jesus, I'm Yours." Ultimately, your hunger to be held all this time it's been a hunger for Him. He's reaching your direction. It's time to reach back. He'll hold you and never let you go.
If you want to experience that love for yourself today, there's a lot of information at our website that I've put there to help you know how to belong to Him and make sure you finally do. It's called ANewStory.com - our website. I hope you'll land there quickly sometimes today.
You are very, very close to experiencing the love that you have been looking for so very long.