You can hang a price tag on just about anything: a Lexus, a house, a set of braces, a computer, a book, dinner out, a pool in the back yard, a Picasso in the parlor, a night at the movies, a London vacation, a new roof, shoes, even a Major League ball park. But there is one thing for which there is no price tag—a hug. I was living in Memphis in my early twenties, married and on my way in life. During that time I took a trip to Miami. The road to Miami went right by my parents South Florida home so I decided to pay a visit.

I pulled into the driveway and got out of the car. I did not even make it to the front door. My dad greeted me on the driveway and wrapped me in a bear hug that would put any bear to shame.

Hugs between my dad and me were few and far between in my teenage and early adult years. How rare? Think endangered species! So when my dad wrapped his arms around me, it went into my long-term memory.

When hugs are rare from an earthly father, it is easy to assume that affection is scarce from the Heavenly Father. But Jesus proved that assumption wrong! The story of the prodigal son gives us a glimpse of the God who hugs.

When he came to his senses, he said, 'How many of my father's hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.' So he got up and went to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. (Luke 15:17-20 NIV)

Can you picture the scene?

The wayward son decided it was time to pay pop a visit. He pulled into the driveway, got out of the car, and before he could even utter a word, his father wrapped him in a bear hug. Talk about speechless!

If the Father can embrace a son who grabs the family inheritance and blows it on a whim, something tells me he is not stingy when it comes to showing affection. Shouldn't his children do the same?

STAY FOCUSED TODAY:Give out some hugs this weekend. Remember that God demonstrated his love to you and wants you to give others a taste of the same.