Monday, July 20, 2015

Running and hugging

Flickr photo by Donnie Ray Jones

when you were a kid

and you were so excited to see someone

that you had to run over and give ‘em a hug

So excited to see your grandma

or your favorite uncle

or your dad just returned from a long trip

that you wanted to be next to them

Right then

In their arms

or just holding on to their leg for a while

And they would look down at you and smile and say something like

Well, hello there

The last time I remember running and hugging

was in college

during a club basketball game

A close game

Right down to the wire

And I was watching from the bench

(a classic example of bad coaching)

And at the very end

the ball came into the hands of Brian

who turned around and made an impossible shot

--at the buzzer--

to win the game


Just like that

And I couldn’t think of anything to do

but to jump up and down

and run around hugging everyone in sight

And since then?

Well, it feels like I’ve outgrown the running part

But I do still hug

A proper grownup hug

Like our son always says

They’re free!

But, now that I think about it some more

Maybe there’s a little running left in this old body

for certain special occasions

Like the man in that story long ago …

But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.


* Last line from … English Standard Version Copyright 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.


  1. Mike, love this one. My grand babies, at 5 and 10 "run and hug." It's awesome!! Great ending too.

    1. Thanks Dawn! We have a little girl neighbor who runs and hugs Cheryl. You're right ... it is awesome!

  2. This is wonderful! Here's to more running and hugging.

  3. Thanks for this thought-provoking, hug-inducing post! You inspire me. Perhaps I will jump up and down and hug everyone in sight tonight, just because it's a Monday! Write on, brother!

    1. Ha ... perfect! Nice seeing you last week, Denell. :)