The Best Way To Stand Up For Someone

Saturday, September 1, 2018
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Listen while you read: "We've A Story To Tell To The Nations"1 (Lyrics)

I have three children, two girls and a boy. Several years ago, I was wrestling with the older girl and the boy. We do that a lot. Imagine screams mixed with laughter and the occasional head bonk.

They charge at me and I grab them, swing them around, and toss them on the couch. They giggle with delight and then body-check me at full speed. (My wife cringes while all of this is going on — but hey, this is some of what we dads do best!)

But off to the side, my younger daughter watches. She's not sure if it's serious or not. But she thinks that I might be hurt and yells, "No, this my daddy!"

She wants to defend me. But all she can do is run over and give me a hug. She buries her head deep in my chest and tightens her tiny arms around my neck. "No, this my daddy!" I tell her that it's okay and that her brother and sister and I are just playing. But still, she clings.

That's how she stands up for me. Maybe, she doesn't know enough to hit out at her brother or sister, or devise some other clever strategy to offer rescue. The only thing that she knows how to do is run to me and hug me.

When someone is hurting, we often search for the right words or explanations. Or we busy ourselves with a hundred clever rescue strategies — when all we need to do is to be there.

In John 15:12, Jesus says, "This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you." (NKJV) Sometimes, that's simpler than we make it out to be.

Is there someone in your life right now who needs some support? Maybe you don't know what to say. Maybe you don't have the right strategy. That's okay. Take some teaching from a two-year old: Just be there. And maybe even give a hug.

Sometimes, the best way to stand up for someone is simply to stand beside them.

Prayer: Lord, give us the willingness and courage to stand up for others by standing beside them. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.

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About the author:

Matthew Ruttan <>
Barrie, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for the good word, Matthew.

    Thank you and keep up the good parenting.

    Well said. Little ones have a lot to teach. Thanks.

    Yes such practical good teaching Mathew. Thank you.

    Thank you for sharing this devotional with us. Blessings.

    What a beautiful reminder of the comfort and power of a hug! Thanks and God bless.

    Well said Matthew,
    God bless!

    This is a great illustration of Jesus’ teaching, thank you.

    Good morning. Very sage advice – I hope many who read it, heed it.

    Hi Matthew
    Very good words this morning.

    Oh Matt how beautiful that example is! The tender love, and compassion of our Lord Jesus Christ came through loud and clear! Thank you for sharing and God bless you and your family.

    Wonderful message, Matthew. (It’s a guy thing. Now I see my son doing the same with his six!)
    Keep writing.
    God bless.

    So true, Matthew, so true. I am trying to do that right now with a recent widow. She and he husband had no children…a lonely time for her. Thank you.

    Thank you so much for your devotional. We are going down to visit a sister-in-law who lost her husband this year. Sometimes I’m not sure what to say to her but I do give her hugs. Now I feel better knowing that this shows I care as much as anything I could say. God Bless.

    This is precious! In the sweetness of a child, great things can be learned! How blessed these children are to have a dad like you. I am sure, also, that they have a lovely mother!
    May God continue to bless you richly as you mold these young loves for Jesus!

    Greetings Matthew,
    Great devotional this morning. Interesting to reflect on how children react to situations. Adults can learn a lot from them and so true how reassuring and consoling a hug can be!

    Dear Matthew,
    I agree with you but would like to take your “be with” one step farther: “Be with also in praying for__ ”
    Keep writing. You have a flair for—

    You sound like a great Father with a wonderful Family. I can sense the love you all share! I love the lessons in life God gives, through so many ways – even through Hugs! Your story blessed me. Thank you! 1 Corinthians 13:8a Love never fails.

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