Prayer Devotion February 13, 2014

"Show your love for others by truly helping them, and not merely by talking about it.  When we love others, we know that we belong to the truth, and we feel at ease in the presence of God."  1 John 3:18-19 Contemporary English Version

        Over the next few days our nation will be aflutter with the excitement of Valentines Day.  Mom's will make cupcakes, children will fill out those fun little cards (which now have candy attached) and many will get stressed out over what to give or do to say "I love you."  Hallmark has millions of suggestions as to how you can communicate your love through 

pre-packaged words and trinkets. Some of those treats might be a welcome gift for someone you care about.  The scriptures though share broader instruction.  "Show others your love by truly helping them!"   I wonder what "true help" would look and feel like if offered to those you love.  To offer true help we must ask ourselves,  "What does my loved one really need?"  "What would bring them joy, offer them a rest, or restore their hope?"  The scriptures challenges us to put our genuine actions behind our words.  
 
        One great resource I have found for learning to love and be loved is called the "5 Love Languages".  This book shares that there are at least 5 primary ways individuals feel love, and that each of us have a way we most need to be loved.  consider the people in your life.  How do they most need and love to be loved?  If you can meet this need through actions and words you will have really helped them experience your love.
 
Quality Time:  Does your loved one crave time together?  What could you rearrange, what could you plan to spend a whole day giving your company?
Touch:  Does your loved one crave physical touch, are they looking for a hug, some cuddle time, a night without kids in the house?  
Gifts:  Does your loved one delight in receiving a special gift?  What could you give that would communicate your love on a deeper level?
Words of Affirmation:  Does your loved one glow when you encourage them or tell them they are going a great job?  Write a letter or dedicate time to sharing your appreciation and adoration.  Dote!
Acts of Service:  Some feel most loved when they are cared for.  Does your loved one seemed stressed by the number of chores on the list or the amount of care giving (children, parents, others) they are expected to do?  What can you do to lighten their load and serve them?  
 
This Valentines Day say "I Love You" to all those you have been blessed to share this life with.  When possible put your actions behind your words and give what they really need.  
 
Please keep in your prayers:
All who are lonely, depressed, and disappointed by Valentines Day.
Those who may be affected by winter weather.  Especially those who work or sleep outside.
All who are recovering from surgery, undergoing cancer treatments, or recovering from illness.  
Pastor Jenny & Pastor Scott 

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