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Summary: This is about God’s love towards us and his gift which is freely given. How will we respond and what will we do with the greatest gift; love?

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What’s special about this weekend?

Slide 1 Valentines Cards

Slide 2 Gifts we might buy or receive

Relate history and myths about the meaning of Valentines Day

Game

Children run and find hidden hearts; written on them are scriptures relating to God’s love for us; 10 hearts, the one’s who find a heart get a chocolate

We give Valentines gifts and cards to remind people how much we love them.

Slide 3 John 3:16 (broken into sections)

(The children can go out now)

What can we learn from this verse?

1. God loves

2. God gave

3. God wants you to receive.

God Loves:

How do we know someone loves us?

Love is more than words

How many times do you hear someone say, ‘they say they love me, but they never show it’.

Love to us depends upon actions and words

God demonstrated His love to us while; we were still sinners Christ died for us Rom 5:8

How awesome is that!

Not only does He love Christians but the ‘world’

Who are what is the ‘world?’ ko’-smos

Love = ä-gä-pä’-ô Unconditional Love

To get pleasure from, to prize it above all other things, be unwilling to abandon it at any cost

We were separated by our sinfulness yet He still loved us enough

You may still be separated, remember this, God Loves you.

Once we’ve received God’s love, we cannot help but give Him love in return

But how many of us only give God our lip service?

What do we give to Him?

God Gave:

God gave the most costly and precious gift He had; Jesus

I don’t think we realize the cost that was involved

The Son had never been apart from the Father and the Holy Spirit

The separation would have been the worse part. (Relate to hell)

The Apostle Paul compares love with several other gifts, but in every case he shows that no matter what else a person excels in, he is of little value unless he has the greatest gift of all---God’s love.

Illustration

At his clinic in Topeka, Kansas, Dr. Carl Menninger instructed his entire staff that the most important thing they could offer any patient was love. He said, “If people can learn to give and receive love, they will usually recover from their physical or mental illness.”

People can recognise genuine love

We all have the need to receive love to know we belong

Without a doubt the greatest need in the world today is the love of God.

When Christianity hit the Roman Empire it was due to the fact that Christians preached the love of Jesus and backed it up with a practical demonstration of love for people.

Jesus is our teacher. Jesus loved in very concrete ways, with a towel, with a whip, and with a cross. The best type of love is that which is tough, pure, and holy.

In Matthew 22:37-40, Jesus tells all of us to love; loving God and one another was the greatest commandment of all.

John 13:34, Jesus said that people would know that we really are His disciples if we love one another. We’re to love others as He loves us.

We have the perfect example of what giving love is

Giving without love:

- out of compulsion

- to rid one’s self of guilt

- to get personal attention

- to get influence

We can give without loving, but we cannot love without giving.


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