Love Big This Christmas
What does “Love Big!” look like to you? Is it when you are first to say to your spouse, “I’m sorry; please forgive me. Can we start over?” when you’ve both just blown up in each other’s face? Yes, that is loving big! When you wait for your spouse to go first, that is loving small.
Is it when you stop to talk to the young pregnant lady standing on the corner at Starbuck’s holding a sign that reads, “Please help with gas so I can go home,” and you have her pull her car into the service station and you fill up the gas tank? Yes, that’s it! We all know there are scammers out there who hold signs at intersections, but if you lump every sign-holder you see in the same “scam category,” you may miss the opportunity to meet a legitimate need.
God loves us big. No doubt about it. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son” (John 3:16). “We love because he first loved us” (1 John 4:19). To love big means to love first. Does everyone love God in return? No, but He still loves us anyway.
Jesus loves us big. He proved it by willingly giving His life for us on the cross. Does everyone He died for love Him back? Clearly no. He knew that would be the case going into it, but He died for you and me anyway so that we can have abundant life. Jesus’ ultimate act of love and kindness toward us “is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes” (Romans 1:16).
Love big. It means getting out there. It means giving yourself away for another. So, do the right thing even if it’s hard and you see no immediate return on your love and kindness investment. Step up to the plate and put the needs of your spouse ahead of your own. God’s kindness is intended to lead people to repentance (Romans 2:4). What can your kindness accomplish?
“The Lord appeared to us in the past, saying: ‘I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness’” (Jeremiah 31:3). What a powerful verse this is that tells us God’s forever love and abiding kindness go together. He desires us to love others like He loves us. Another scripture worthy of our serious contemplation is James 4:17: “If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.”
Love big this Christmas. Show unusual kindness and meet a need (Acts 28:2). Do something you’ve never done before. Pay for the people’s food in the drive-through behind you. Invite someone to attend a Christmas church service with you. Bake cookies and take them to your neighbor. Give someone a Christmas card with a gift card to a local restaurant tucked inside. Take groceries to a family who could use a little help. Give an extra financial gift to a missionary or local, U.S. or foreign missions organization. Do you know someone who will be alone this Christmas? Take them a gift and invite them to join your family for Christmas Eve brunch. And remember to include your children in your acts of love and kindness.
Love big this Christmas and make a difference in someone’s life. Who knows? It surely will make a difference in your life, and it could even become your New Year’s resolution to love big in 2019! So practice now!