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Jan 3, 2007

Selfish... that's me

A simple hug expresses love which words cannot describe.

Yes. I'm referring to myself. Selfish... that's the best word to describe what I've not done tonight. And yes, I'm so very disappointed with myself right now. This very moment. No, not just disappointment. Even shame.

Shame on me. I've always wanted to receive a hug from Christ, a real hug; but tonight, I've just let the opportunity slip by. And I could have brought Christ to another person as well, but I failed. Shame, what a shame!

I went for the *Evening of Prayer just now. As I did not have any transport to go home, a friend (who is one of the important people in the Parish Council) offered to give me a lift home. So I waited for him outside the church as he had a short discussion with somebody. I was with another two persons, one of the Extraordinary Ministers (who is my father's friend) and his partially disabled son (he had an accident years ago, which affected his locomotion, speech and appearance). I was talking to him and his father when a friend of mine came and we gave each other a hug.

"Gosh, I could have fallen asleep if we hug this way. Haha!" She laughed. And after waving me goodbye and good night, she left with her mother.

So my partially disabled friend saw us, got excited and he said to me, "Hey, I want a hug too!" At first, I couldn't make out what he was saying. I thought he said "I want to hachoo!" which means he wanted to sneeze. I jokingly backed away from him, and told him to "Go ahead and sneeze", then only to realize that something was wrong. So I asked him to repeat what he has just said.

"I want a hug too," he repeated.
"Ohh... from whom?" I asked.
He pointed his index finger at me. "You."

At that very moment, I didn't know what to do. I flashed him a big, shy smile, and stood there, feeling embarrassed. I was totally lost. I didn't know whether I should give him a hug or not. Then a thought came: You're a lady, and you want to hug a guy? HELLO! And look, his father is looking at you. There are some other people around too. Are you not afraid that people might spread rumours? Seeing me not doing anything, he changed the topic.

I must have broken his heart, twice.

See, I'm right, am I not? I'm a selfish person. I feel so insincere. I always tell myself that I must reach out and give anybody a hug if they ask for one or needed one. Anybody at all. Male, female, the sick, the young and the old. Anyway, what is so difficult in performing the simple act of hugging? Yet, I failed. I failed so terribly!!

Oh Lord, please tell me what was wrong with me! How could I give in to such selfish thoughts? Ohhh... how could I let this happen? How could I reject a hug for and from Christ in disguise?? I wish I were at the beach now, alone so that I could cry my heart out... and cry for His forgiveness and perhaps, for another chance...

My dear friends, please, as you read this, DON'T follow my bad example. If I say that I'm still bounded by the Chinese tradition where unmarried man and woman are not supposed to touch, what more to hug each other, I'll be a big liar and besides, that would be a very lame excuse.

A sincere advice for all (this time, I know this comes from God): When it comes to reaching out, don't be self-conscious. Instead, be God-conscious. A hug is a simple act of love. It has the power to bring others to God, as well as helping us to experience God.

I'm invited to the Mandarin session of Evening of Prayer next week, for my help is needed then. I hope I'll be given another chance to give that friend of mine a hug he has asked for tonight.



*A special prayer session with praise and worship, which is held every Wednesday night in Holy Trinity Church. Every first Wednesday, there will be Benediction and exposure of the Host. All are invited to attend, as long as you're in Kuching.
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