Words from the Heart for Thursday February 6th, 2020
…a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing…
Ecclesiastes 3:5 (NIV)
Embracing and Refraining
Marie Lecrampe moved from France to British Columbia back in 2018. She recently wrote a blog about some of her experiences here in Canada that are surprising cultural differences between the two countries. Her blog deals with hugging and she writes, “In France, you used to shake hands with your co-workers every morning, maybe even kiss them on the cheeks sometimes. Here in Canada, the significant difference is about hugging because yes, hugging can happen in the workplace and you may have a hard time understanding what it is all about.
There was a popular children’s song when our children were young that said, “four hugs a day, that’s the minimum, four hugs a day, not the maximum.” It taught an important lesson about how children need to be loved, and a hug from a trusted family member or teacher was good medicine. It still is. Human touch is so important. We are built to be in relationship with each other, and when we receive an embrace at an appropriate time, it can help us deal with any number of situations, negative and positive, that we are going through. As important as an embrace is, there are times when they are inappropriate. There are times when we should refrain from embracing. I am, by nature, a hugger. Fortunately, I learned early on how to read social situations, and I have worked hard at putting into practice the wisdom that Solomon lays out in Ecclesiastes 3:5: “…a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing…” There is a time to embrace, and time to refrain from embracing.
These have been words from the heart.