Abundant Living Vol. XVI, Issue 6

“Be devoted to one another in brotherly love.” Romans 12:10 

It started out as a dream. Lots of success stories begin that way, don’t they? But this was not a dream borne out of some passion or deep desire. This was from a literal dream, the middle-of-the-night-in-your-sleep variety. At first she didn’t think much of it, but when the exact same dream recurred the next night Ruth shared it with her husband Chris the moment they awoke the next morning. It was so vivid, so real, so convincing she could hardly contain herself. So, when Chris heard it, convinced his wife had heard the voice of God, his immediate response was, “I think we’re supposed to do this.” So it was then and there that HUGS Café was conceived.

Today HUGS Café is a popular and thriving lunch spot located just off the bustling town square in McKinney, Texas where we live. Not only does HUGS offer a fabulous lunch menu, but to dine there is to encounter one of the most loving and joyful environments you have ever experienced. You see, Ruth’s dream was not about a business, but a purpose, that of training and employing those who many would consider unemployable, specifically adults with special needs. But Ruth does not see them as people with special needs, rather as individuals with special gifts. And that’s what you experience when you have lunch HUGS, which always includes a free side with your order, a big ol’ hug.

Ruth and Chris Thompson are dear friends of ours, and Tee has been a volunteer worker along side Ruth almost since its inception. But HUGS is not successful because of Ruth’s dream, that was simply the inspiration. No, HUGS became successful because of Ruth’s devotion, her dedication and commitment, and commitment is where the rubber meets the road. Likewise, it is from lack of commitment that we often run off the road. Is that not true for almost every success or failure, whether in business or profession, marriage, parenting, or any other worthwhile endeavor? Like HUGS which was inspired by a dream, for dreams to succeed requires commitment.

HUGS states that its mission is to change the world “one hug at a time”, which seems consistent with the Apostle Paul’s instructions to “Be devoted to one another in brotherly love.” For when we are devoted to one another through a good and worthy cause, like Ruth, we too can state that we’re on a mission to change the world – one person at a time.

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