"You look like you need a hug."
My 15-year-old son held his strong arms wide, ready to comfort his 3-year-old sister.
She was having none of it.
A thunderstorm in princess pajamas, the little girl crossed her arms, scowled, and spat out, "NO."
Ever persistent, next her brother knelt so they could be at eye level and opened his arms again. "Please? It will help you feel better," he cajoled.
Turning her back and stepping away, she jutted her chin out and repeated, "NO."
He moved a little closer and tried again. "C’mon, you know you want one."
"Noooooooo!" she yelped, moving behind the recliner.
The last scene I recall before the night whirled on was one brother respectfully and patiently placing himself where he could be seen without crowding the grumpy preschooler, silently smiling with his arms open in hopes that she would change her mind.
I still don’t know if she gave him a hug, but the situation personified the scripture, "And while his arm of mercy is extended towards you in the light of the day, harden not your hearts." (Jacob 6:5, emphasis added)
As life with all its ups and downs pounds on, I wonder how often our Elder Brother, Jesus, respectfully and patiently waits close by, hoping and inviting us to be comforted along the way.
Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf taught:
"His invitation is simple:
'Turn … to me.'
'Come unto me.'
'Draw near unto me and I will draw near unto you.’..
It requires a little faith... Over time, you will recognize His hand in your life. You will feel His love. And the desire to walk in His light and follow His way will grow with every step of faith you take."
So it’s okay to figuratively come out from your hiding spot behind the recliner. His arms are open still.