Soon it will be Valentine’s Day and the shops will be filled with red heart cards, chocolate gifts and flowers for us to give to our nearest and dearest.
But even if you write the whole thing off as a commerical con, most of us understand that the principle behind Valentine’s Day holds true – if you love someone you want to give them things. You want to do stuff for them.
Think of your closest relationship – whether it is romantic or familial – if that person tells you that they love you but never acts on that feeling, how loved would you feel?
Love does, it is not some static feeling; it propels us to act on behalf of the other. The impulse of love is to give and put the needs of our beloved ahead of ourselves.
Someone can say “I love you” 50 times over and it will mean nothing, unless they act on it.
So when the Bible says that “God so loved the world” is that just empty words? Or is it backed up by action?
Well, the next part of that well-known verse (John 3:16) gives us the answer. “God so loved the world that He gave His only Son that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.”
God’s love gave us His precious, perfect and only Son, Jesus, to die on the cross to pay the price for all the wrongs we have done, in order that we can enjoy a relationship with Him now and into eternity.
And just in case you think “well, how could God do that to His Son?” Jesus was no victim.
He said in John 10:17-18 : “Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father.”
So both God the Father and Jesus the Son loved us so much that they gave of themselves in order to demonstrate their heart for us.
John 15:13 says, “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.”
And that is what Jesus Christ did.
Not only that, but God has given us this beautiful, colourful, wondrous world to live in, and each day gives us sunlight, rain, oxygen, sleep, strength and countless other blessings that we take for granted as ‘normal life’.
In fact, the Bible explains that every good thing we have, comes from God.
This Valentine’s Day understand that all creation is shouting “God loves you!”
And that message is backed up by His incredible goodness and kindness to us. But because God loves you, He doesn’t bully you into a relationship with Him but He invites you with open arms, His hands bearing the nail marks of where Jesus hung on the cross to pay the debt of your sin. Why not read His love letter today in the book of John in the New Testament?