Summary: G.U.T.S: Tangible- Let's talk about 5 tangible expressions of love from the one another's of the New Testament (Series idea from Mike Mack in his book, Small Group Vital Signs, pgs. 103-111; Outline from Gary Chapman's book, The 5 Love Languages)
Needed: A Valentine Card
Today is a special holioday, what is it? That's right -- Valentine Day. It is a very special day because it is a time when we tell our friends, family, and sweethearts how much we love them. One way we do that is by sending Valentine cards.
Valentine cards may be sweet or they may be funny. They may be warm and friendly. Here is one I bought for my wife. I always spend a lot of time choosing a card for my wife because I want the card to tell her just how much I love her. Do you think my wife enjoys hearing me tell her how much I love her? I know she does, but do you know what else she likes? She likes for me to show her how much I love her. I asked my wife to make a list of things that I could do to show her that I love her. This is what she wrote:
Wipe off the water from the bathroom counter; Walk beside me, my legs are shorter
Stay with me and Stay with the group
Hold my hand ; Rub my back; Don't try to cook
Open doors, or at least hold them so they don't swing closed on me
Love our boys; Take out the trash; Stay awake when I'm talking ; Defend me
Skim milk, M&Ms, & Sweet Tea go a long way; Tell me you still do
My wife likes for me to say, “I love you”, but she likes it even more when I show her. Does Jesus like to hear how much we love him? I am sure that he does, but I think he likes it even more when we show him how much we love him. How do we do that? Well, that list my wife made is a big clue? Jesus made a list too! His list is found in the Bible. Jesus said, “If you love me, you will obey what I command.” John 14:15. If we want to show Jesus how much we love him, we will read his Word and do what he told us to do. When we tell Jesus we love him, remember that he likes it even more when we show him -- by obeying what He commands.
From Sermons4Kids at: http://www.sermons4kids.com/love-me-show-me.html
When I say the word “love” there are several things that can come to our minds. On a day like today many think of romantic love. Two people meet and fall in love. “Some enchanted evening you may see a stranger; You may see a stranger across a crowded room; And somehow you know, you know even then; That somewhere you'll see her again and again; Who can explain it, who can tell you why; Fools give you reasons, wise men never try”
In romantic relationships there has to be an element of chemistry. Two people seem to click, their personalities mess, their temperments compliment each other, they laugh at the same things, have inspiring conversations between them, they are better together than separated. This is even true in same gender relationships. I seem to get along with a few in my gender better than others. David found this to be true with Jonathan. “I grieve for you, Jonathan my brother; you were very dear to me. Your love for me was wonderful, more wonderful than that of women.” 2 Samuel 1:26, NIV. Some take this to mean that David and Jonathan had some kind of physical relationship but that just shows how sin sick we are as a society. When we consider Jesus’ relationships, he had the 12, “that they might be with him and that he might send them out to preach” Mark 3:14, NIV. Constantly with the 12 and this was deliberate, not some enchanted evening. Jesus had 3, Peter, James, and John, who were with him more than the others. These 3 were at all of the important events in the Gospels. Even deeper than that, we have the beloved apostle- the disciple whom Jesus loved, meaning John, the brother of James. Evidently Jesus and John had chemistry and John was closer to Jesus even than Peter. We see here that even Jesus had people with whom he more easily connected with than others.
Even so, if we make little effort to maintain these relationships, they will die. Many a person has had some enchanted evening only later to see that relationship end in divorce. Has to be deliberate actions on our part to see that this relationship is maintained, and not only maintained but thriving and going stronger than before.
To have great relationships, we must show our love through our actions to each other. Our love must be seen, must be tangible. It takes G.U.T.S to live in real, Christ centered community.