The Physical Touch of God and Why Your Touch Matters

The Physical Touch of God and Why Your Touch Matters

“I just wanted someone to hug me.” This was the comment I had from one of our Influence Women members on a Zoom webinar as the pandemic was coming to an end. We had been discussing why relationships matter and why Influence Women is essential. She was single and, during the pandemic, had been left for weeks without much outside conversation or actual physical touch – a hug. “It was one of the most difficult times I have ever had to experience in her life,” she said.

Touch is essential to humans.

Many studies have been done on the effects of babies left and never touched or picked up, of people who were left untouched in nursing or care homes, or even for long periods on deserted islands. The result is often irreversible trauma emotionally, physically, and sadly even spiritually. God created us to be in relationships. Jesus touched the people He healed. Thomas required Jesus to show him his hands and feet after He had been resurrected. Jesus said to him, “… “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.” John 20:27 (NIV). The reason God sent Jesus to our broken, sinful world was so that we could touch, see, and hear God physically through the flesh of Jesus. In today’s 24/7 access to information and emerging AI technology, physical touch is becoming more important than ever to knowing and experiencing real truth and love.

I’ve been blessed to be married for many years (more than I was ever single) to a loving husband who likes to touch things. I do too. He sometimes laughs at me when I shop because I touch things. But I have had to stop him from time to time when he talks to someone he doesn’t know because he, with his caring manner, will lightly touch their elbow or back when he stops to talk to them. People today don’t like to be touched because they aren’t touched anymore. It can unfortunately feel offensive instead of caring. My children and grandchildren don’t live near me, and I miss their physical touch, and not being able to squeeze them regularly makes my heart ache. “Facetime” is great, but it’s just not the same as hugging their necks.

We can still feel God’s touch on us today.

God wants us to touch Him and longs for our engagement with knowing Him intimately. He doesn’t require anything of us but to love Him and spend time with Him. He is love – perfect love. We feel His touch through our personal encounters. It’s a mystery to me still, but I feel God in my prayers and meditations when I read the Bible. I feel Him through the arms and hugs of other believers. Sometimes it is just the squeeze of a hand in a prayer circle or a pat on the shoulder, or a high five. Sometimes I feel God in a crisp Autumn breeze or in the sound of ocean waves pounding. Sometimes it is the aroma of flowers or pine trees or the smell of a baby’s cheek. I sense God’s joy in the sound of children giggling, a dog’s wet nose-nudges, or in the expressions of praise, song, music, and worship as believers gather together.

God touches you when you touch each other.

My heart leaps for joy at Influence Women’s gatherings when you come together at events, and I see you touch others’ lives. When you hug each other, the room explodes in a deafening noise of love. It’s why the Influence Women community of women touching each other needs to grow more. We need to gather others so that we can touch the world with our stories, projects, music and art, and ultimately share God’s loving touch with a depressed and lonely world. Our culture needs to touch each other through our artistic and creative work. When we collaborate and intimately connect, the darkness in our world is changed by the Light of the World.

I hope you will make an effort to schedule the Influence Women event dates in your calendars when they are announced and show up to touch others. Join the relationship-building INspire gatherings and bring a friend to the larger professional events. Register for the online Bible study or a mentorship series. Come and volunteer. Your touch matters to someone, even if it’s just a smile on a screen, a caring prayer you give, or an encouraging word about something you’ve learned. We grow stronger and more powerful when we touch each other. You have touched me, and I am forever grateful. Keep touching others – they need you. We need you.

Register for the in-person Hollywood Chapter Professional Brunch, and bring a friend – We want to see you there and hug your neck!

An INNER VIEW Part 2 with Expert Industry Negotiator, Victoria Slater

An INNER VIEW Part 2 with Expert Industry Negotiator, Victoria Slater

As creative people, we can be intimidated or even mystified by the gritty “business” parts of the industry. Do you sometimes wonder if you should be negotiating better? Or if you’re getting paid less because of your gender? Expert negotiator and industry executive, Victoria Slater, has given us an INNER VIEW Part 2 with some important insights! We were honored to feature Victoria for an Influence Webinar in 2022, but there were some key questions she didn’t have time to respond to during the webinar. Read below for more expert tips on the art of negotiation in the industry!

Bio
Victoria Slater spent over twenty years in the entertainment industry. Her career took her to foreign lands and negotiating deals on the sets of many feature films and television projects. These include Twentieth Century Fox’s mega blockbuster disaster film VOLCANO, Paramount’s STAR TREK VII: GENERATIONS, and BAYWATCH. She is a Producers Guild of America member, serving on the PGA Board of Directors for nine years, and chaired their Mentoring Program for over seven years. In 2007 Victoria was awarded the prestigious AP Council Commitment Award for her service to the Guild.

 

INNER VIEW

Kathleen Cooke:  Do female writers get the same compensation as their male counterparts? 

Victoria Slater: I don’t think it is so much male vs female but experience and credits. Do you have an agent, and are you willing to negotiate? If you feel you are not getting the same deal as a male counterpart for the same work with the same experience, stand strong and negotiate for better pay and terms.

Kathleen: Why are writers the least recognized when productions cannot happen without them?

Victoria: When work is a set pay, you can be out of the picture once your work is delivered. Someone with a creative vision for your work (producer/director) takes over and often no longer wants your input. It is the nature of the industry. That is why writers often become producers and directors.

Kathleen: What is a good way to negotiate with a name(d) actor to be in an independent film?

Victoria: Tell them the advantage it will be to them. If you don’t have the money for their quote, approach them differently. Is your project one that appeals to them for some other reason, like a cause they champion, helping a friend out, or is it a chance to play a part not normally offered to them? It can be any number of reasons.

Kathleen: How do you respond to biases presented towards women in the negotiation process?

Victoria: This is the whole reason I wrote my book, How to Negotiate Without Freaking Out to help women get over the fear of negotiating. Biases often derive from social norms. Women are often afraid of offending. There are ways to negotiate that are not offensive. Get my book!

 

Want to read Part 1 of Victoria’s INNER VIEW? Click here!