Valentine’s Day is here. It is time to show your love, at least that is what the ads are proclaiming with seemingly every web site, TV commercial, or magazine cover you see. Flowers, chocolates, jewelry, teddy bears and related items are the order of the day. But do these things really show what love means?
The Holy Spirit’s gift of love costs much more than any of the items listed above. The Holy Spirit’s idea of love will cost you your life. Here are just a few examples of what selfless love looks like from I Corinthians 13:
Love is patient
Do you listen before you speak?
Are you eager to give your time to your wife or husband?
Do your children know that you have time to learn about even the smallest details of their lives?
Love is kind
Does your family experience more of your disinterest than your kindness?
Are your words pleasant?
Do you gladly give up your time to do the things that matter to the people you love?
Love is not proud
Pride lurks in the background of your mind ready to spring at the first available opportunity. If the following are true, then pride is at work:
Are you frustrated when your spouse doesn’t appreciate you?
Are you frequently irritated with others in your family?
Love is not self-seeking
Love is not about you. Love is about showing God’s love, regardless of the price to you. If you believe you are always unfairly treated and that you are not respected enough, you run the risk of seeking your own good at the expense of others.
Love is not easily angered
How easy is it for you to become angry? Be honest!
If you are easily angered, you have lost sight of what it means to follow Christ. You have exchanged God’s gift of love for self-pity. Suppose God were to become angry at you as easily as you become angry with those closest to you?
Love keeps no record of wrongs
Are you often thinking about how everyone else, especially your spouse, needs to do more and better?
Are things you are frustrated about always on the tip of your tongue?
Would you be happy if you were constantly reminded of your daily failures?
Do you keep a running total of the wrongs done to you? This is not love. If you keep such a list, you will be ruled by disappointment and frustration.
This year, along with the special gift you may have planned, give your spouse the gift of God’s love. Follow Christ’s example, give your life.