No Plug In’s, Please

During the month of February and as Valentine’s Day approaches,

we’re bombarded with suggestions of gift ideas for loved ones. Whether the gift is a card, a phone call to a loved one, or flowers, the gift says something about the giver.   

The first gift I received from my husband, Keith, after we were married was at Christmas.  My family gathered in the den, as was our tradition.  Daddy built a blazing fire while Mama served coffee and hot chocolate.  Daddy gave Mama the same thing he’d given her for years:  a beautiful long nightgown, robe, her favorite cologne, and usually, a piece of jewelry.  After everyone else opened their gifts, Keith handed me a present.  Like lovebirds, we sat close beside each other near the warm fire.  All eyes were glued on me as I placed the wrapped box on my lap.  Keith grinned as I slowly unwrapped the present.  Mama and Daddy leaned forward to see what I was opening. My sisters anxiously asked, “What is it?” 

Perhaps a drum roll would have been appropriate, but there was none.  Instead, my eyes starred at a box with a picture of an General Electric iron.  I wondered if that was really what Keith bought me.  However, when he gleefully offered, “I thought you could use this,” my hope vanished that a piece of jewelry was tucked inside.

A hush fell over the Taylor household as Keith again offered, “I thought you could use an iron.”  For the first time, my talkative family had nothing to say. Keith, noticing the silence, hurriedly explained that his family gave practical “work” gifts.

Note to gift givers: 

the best gifts are gifts of love; gifts that aren’t tied to work.  No one better demonstrates this than God who gave His only begotten Son.  God made it clear that His gift of salvation to us is not tied to any work we might do.  Rather, salvation is a gift; a gift given in love.

Although God’s gift of Christ was of the highest price and cost Christ’s life, our gifts to one another don’t have to be tied to dollar signs.  Keith’s gifts to me have come a long way since that first year when he was a law school student.  However, our favorite gifts to one another aren’t roses or candy.  They’re spending time together, encouraging one another, holding hands, and taking walks. Those are the best gifts; for they’re gifts of the heart. 

Do you wish you had someone to spend Valentine’s Day with?  Are you hoping for a rose, but willing to settle for an iron?  Remember, there is someone who loves you dearly.  He paints His love for you across the morning sky and starlit nights.  His name is Jesus.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life,” John 3:16 NIV. 

Heavenly Father, thank you for the gift of eternal salvation in Jesus Christ. Help us always be mindful of how much you love us.  

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