Expressions of Love


Scripture for the day:  1 John 4:7 “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God;”

When I was a child, I thought love came wrapped in pretty paper with bows.  It also came to me as a sweet aroma from my mother’s cinnamon rolls, pies, cakes and cookies.  It was a very tangible thing in my life.  It surrounded me, sustained me, helped me grow and flourish.

I grew up believing in Hallmark moments.  There were times when a card and a gift was the perfect expression of love to mark an accomplishment or milestone.  I loved giving those tokens of love, and I was excited to receive them.

As an adult, however, I have grown to appreciate the unwrapped, unadorned expressions of love.  They are simply gifts from the heart that we give to one another, and they have come to mean the most to me.

I remember a sweet little granddaughter, just learning to walk.  I was taking her older sister to the bathroom while she and Papa waited, and she was yelling my name and running after me as fast as her little legs would carry her.  No wrapping paper, but there was love in every step.  I never go to the mall but what I think of that moment.

I remember breakfast in bed served lovingly by my son and daughter.  Never mind the agonizing moments when I heard a bowl crash to the floor in the kitchen or how much I simply wanted to get out of bed.  Finally there was a knock on the door and my children presented me with a beautiful breakfast on a tray with a bouquet of dandelions picked by my son.  No breakfast will ever top that one in my mind.

I remember my mother making me a dress out of a white sheet one Sunday afternoon.  I needed a white dress for a sorority event, the stores were closed on Sunday, so she used what she had on hand.  The dress was beautiful, and I wore it proudly.  It was made from a sheet and stitched with love.  No pretty paper or card needed.

I remember a daddy who would hold me in his arms and tell me stories.  I would gaze into his soft, brown eyes and run my fingers through his brown, wavy hair.  I have never known such love, such safety, such joy as I did wrapped in his arms.  Losing him when I was 23 gave me a first-hand look at pain. To lose someone you have loved so much is almost unbearable.  The loss is still felt, but the pain has lessened.

I remember my husband spending almost every minute in my hospital room after cancer surgery.  I was on morphine, but he was quite sober.  He never complained, and he would only leave for short periods of time.  When we talked about it later, he said he was there because I was there.  Simple.  He loved me and wanted to be with me.  He has given me many unwrapped gifts over the years.  He isn’t big on emotion or fluff, but he can make the mundane beautiful.

I remember my son standing in the corner of my hospital room, holding his baby daughter, eyes misty with love and concern for me.  I wanted to tell him I would be all right, but I wasn’t sure.  He was probably less sure, and it was written all over his face.

I remember my daughter coming to my chemo sessions.  She always brightened my day with stories about my granddaughters.  We laughed, talked, and just seeing her took my mind off what was happening to me.

I have a huge scrapbook of memories in my mind of those who have loved me and been loved in return.  They are precious to me, worth far more than silver or gold.  But the sweetest expression of love is of Jesus dying on a cross to save me.  Nothing will ever top that, and I cling to His promise, His substitutionary death and glorious resurrection.  It was a gift, freely given, filled with love.  It was my choice to accept or reject His gift.  I accepted and have never been sorry.  One day I hope to sit at His feet and thank Him.

Song for the day:  “And Can It Be”

“Amazing love! how can it be that Thou, my God, should die for me.”

 

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Howard Brecheisen
    May 27, 2013 @ 16:08:08

    Connie, remember the old hymn “Precious memories, how they linger; how they ever flood my soul” ?  I thought of it when I read your devotion today…precious memories, mixed with some pain and sorrow…part of life on this earth, Amen?  How wonderful to know that we have Heaven awaiting us; void of pain, sorrow and strife and filled with JESUS…unconditional love like we’ve never fully experienced.  Yes, how comforting to know that this world is not our final HOME!  Have a wonderful week!  Love, Joyce

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