What’s In A Gift?

Happy Valentine's day Love Messages 2016Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, well today when most of you will probably read this. Valentine’s Day is a day of romance, love, and as most holidays are these days, commercialization. The stores have been brimming over since December with red and pink, hearts, candy, giant stuffed animals, and cards. People of all ages are swarming to find the perfect thing for their special someone. Restaurants will be packed. Grocery stores certainly have stocked up on certain food items. And flower shops are well staffed for the onslaught of orders they will receive.

With Valentine’s Day literally just a day away, I am reminded of a conversation my wife and I had with some friends over dinner a little while back. The young husband was retelling a story about some holiday – birthday, Christmas, something, I’m not sure – where his mother called and reminded him multiple times that he had to get his new bride a gift. He recounted his reaction to his mother’s constant barrage of reminders. He told us about how he assured his mother he had it covered. He described his consenting opinion that he needed to have something for his wife – even if it was just to pacify his mother. This got me thinking…

What’s in a gift? What’s the point? Why do we spend so much time and so much money on our loved one this time of year? To be romantic? To satisfy some expectation? Because we just want to? Regardless of where you may position yourself on this subject, it remains a tense and stressful time of year for many couples.

Let us not forget though what love is really all about. The Bible teaches us A LOT about love (John 3:16 and 1 Corinthians 13 for example), but the Gospel of John describes a conversation Jesus had with His disciples about love. In chapter 15 verse 13 He said, “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” Jesus wants His disciples to know that as His people they should be identifiable to the rest of the world. They should stand out in some way. He tells them to lay down their life for each other. One could argue this literally, and normally I would subscribe to that, but in light of this holiday and the stress we normally fall under, let me suggest simply that love is sacrifice. Not really a new concept, huh? In this day and age though, we need to be reminded of this. To love is to sacrifice yourself for the other person. We sacrifice our thoughts, our concerns, our desires to care and nurture our loved one. This does not mean we are doormats or weak. To love sacrificially means to care more about your loved one than yourself. God Himself modeled this for us. He loved us so much that He came down to Earth and ultimately died on the cross for the forgiveness of our sins and rose from the grave to defeat death and give us the opportunity to have eternal life with Him – if we would just accept His gift. So, what’s in a gift? Anyway, I was just thinking…


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