The Hug

Posted by on Sep 4, 2014 in Encouragement, Uplifting Story | 1 comment

By: Jonnathan Zin Truong | Facebook, Twitter As I drove into work today, my iPod began to play a random song from a British band called The Zutons. Instantly my mind wandered back in time, about 10 years, to a man who made a huge and profound impact in my life, a man who encouraged me to dream big and pursue those dreams. A man who inspired childlike joy and creativity to everybody he knew. A man I am honored to have called a friend and mentor. That man is Mark Esposito. Mark was the son of a famous Marvel comic illustrator, Mike Esposito but to those who knew him, Mark was a father figure, a friend and a strong Christian. Mark was a business partner at a marketing agency my design firm shared a space with in the early 2000s. When I think of Mark, I recall one of the first interactions I had with him. In my first week in business, Mark walked into my office, smiled and extended his arms wide, to his left and right and said, “Come here!” I looked at him and said, “What?” Being Asian, I grew up like many other who share my ethnicity, a home void from physical affection focused on business, success, and material things. Mark again said, “Come here Jonnathan!” I again hesitated and asked him, “What do you want?” You see, Mark was a big big guy, my estimate was at least 6’ 3”, probably 280 pounds and had an abnormally large wing span for his height. Mark smiled and said, “I felt God prompt me to come in and give you a hug. So here I am.” You see, I would learn later that Mark was a man who lived with great convictions, a man with a wonderful relationship with God and was extremely obedient when he heard God prompt him to do something. Hesitantly, I stood up and gave Mark a half hug, as I tried to retreat back to my seat, Mark wrapped his giant arms around me and said, “God told me that you grew up in a broken home and that your father wasn’t much of a father. He asked me to tell you, that if you ever need a father to listen, provide sound advice or to just give a hug, to come to me. God loves you so much Jonnathan and I am here for you, for anything.” Mark gave me a father’s blessing. Even though he was, at the time, a man I barely knew, emotions flooded my heart and tears began to flow. I answered him with a simple, “Ok, thank you.” He smiled, cracked a joke and went back to his office. I closed my office door and cried for what felt like an eternity. Over the next 5 years, I spoke with Mark countless times, seeking...

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Posted by on Sep 3, 2014 in Bible Study, Direction, Sermon | 0 comments

By: Olivia Landes Truong | Facebook Entitlement robs us of the ability to be grateful. Thanksgiving is the key to the gates of God. There are too many things beyond that point to stay stuck in a place where everyone owes us something (poverty thinking). Releasing people releases yourself and releases God from what you believe you are owed. Take every good gift as a gift from your heavenly Father (James 1:17) and realize that the only one who deserves to judge has judged us worthy of the life HE should have had. That should cause an explosion of gratefulness in every heart. #thankful #blessed #loved #god #entitlement...

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