by e

I missed Pastor Mark’s message last sunday.

Thank God for a particular friend who posted a summary of what what preached on facebook.

something that stuck out was the part on hugs.

a tactile expression of love.

i surprised if we even ask ourselves about the need for physical intimacy.

Pastor Mark spoke about hugs and the lack of it in our asian society.(Boy, was this part the tear-jerker?)

Quite awhile ago, John Purcell wrote about him still holding his mother’s hand.. (oh and I miss all his stories about Frank and friends – it’s like Narnia to me sometimes)

Put hugs aside, do we even dare to hold our mother’s hand in public? (ok, men this question is for us)

Not long ago I tried giving my Dad a hug, one thing about hugging my dad is that getting to him is a adventure itself – you have to evade smoke and furniture and maneuver you way to the grand coach and fight attention with the television or newspaper.

In the end, I would liken the hug to grab a lamp post – no offence to my daddy. But He just stood still as I wrapped one arm around him.

And I pried my lips open to say: “Pa, I love you”

and it was a moment of awkwardness. And my Dad just replied this: “Pa, doesn’t need love, Pa is just doing His duty. I want the best for you that’s all”

So the Holy Spirit translator gave me this: “Son, Dad loves you”

Sure the original message seems hurtful. I don’t need love.. yada yada…

But i think in my Dad’s super limited love vocab… In His context His duty is his love gift to me…

A house, bread and clothes. Though I’m financial independant – I credit my Dad to my blessed life today (though we are quite a lower-middle income family, who cares..)

Today I’m giving my Dad cash every month… and He’s boosting to the relatives about it.. He never boosted about me winning gold for my school competitions or getting ‘A’s…(usually he’ll point out the ‘C’s and the ‘D’s)

But when I hit the nail on speaking His love language everything changes… My Dad’s not materialistic nor is he money face.. It’s just a son to dad thing… It’s a duty to ‘feed’ my dad when he’s old (and he is old – 65 this year, old enough to be a grand-daddy), to him duty is love.

And it’s times like this we should be the chance to show them your kind of love. I’ll hug my dad before i pass him a portion of my salary… For Mom i’ll buy her Ben & Jerry’s (Trust me THAT’S her love language… and she feels loved eating ice cream her son bought)

It’s like God to do such simple, un-religious, un-complex and personal acts of love eh?

Sometimes it’s just a rainbow in the sky.

Sometimes it’s a nice postcard from a friend

Sometimes it’s from the coffee aunty who gives you more teh tarik than the oppositive table…

God doesn’t necessary need to give us ‘spiritual’ stuffs… what He gives other doesn’t mean he’ll give us.. God doesn’t mass order presents and ask angels to deliver them… Leave that to Saint Nick…

When it comes to love.. God becomes personal… Hugs to the cold and numb… Laughter to the depressed… Strength for the weak…

True, we still need physical intimacy… We still long for hugs from our parents…

But funny, our parents been giving their form of hugs a long time ago… whether it’s secretly paying for our camp fees… or allowing us to spend the month with some friends overseas even when they’ll miss us like crazy that they nag a month worth of nags before we leave..

And for us grown ups.. it may pushing us to get married even though they rather you stay at home with them forever.. it maybe the home cook dinners that we take for granted…

And to some… Our parents watch over us often conversing with our creator regarding us… That they are never to far from us because where Jesus is they are too… Jesus is in our hearts isn’t he?

We complain that our parents don’t speak our love language… Well…. Let’s turn on our Holy Spirit Universal translators and start seeing the little things our parents do to say ‘I love you’…