Grown with Love
“Nothing Says ‘I Love You’ more than an Orchid. Give your Valentine a gift that is as unique as they are. With graceful, arching branches, and exotic flowers. Orchids are easy to care for with blooms that last!” Those were the words and this is the image that Calloway’s Nursery sent to me in their email a couple of days ago. Really? “Nothing says ‘I Love You’ more than an Orchid?” Oh, contraire! Yes, maybe as a token of love but nothing says “I love you” more than actions that speak louder than words AND orchids.
That nursery got the title right “Grown with Love”. Because love – real sacrificial, all-in love and devotion and holding true to vows we’ve made, preferring each other above ourselves, serving one another, cherishing the most precious gift given to us……is grown. Day-by-day, year-after-year. And, I promise you – love WILL grow daily when God is the CENTER of the love we share with each other. He’s the sunshine, the rain, the fertilizer AND the tender-loving-care that makes that “first love” last forever.
Of course, I’m referring, first, to married love, but I’m also referring to the love we have for ourselves and others. Did you know that loving ourselves is such an honor to our Creator? He was meticulous in handcrafting us and giving us those freckles on our noses and those lanky or chubby legs? He designed us with His absolute plan – from our mother’s wombs and His love has only grown for us. I’m still growing in my love for myself – which is a work of art – when yet another wrinkle pops out and another ache comes in this young body. But, love it is – it is the gift of life that God gave me so I’m expressing gratitude for every day I can use this jar of clay for Him.
Of course, Valentine’s generates thoughts to lovers and romantic relationships. But why don’t we take it up a notch and determine that Valentine’s is about love for everyone we encounter? Sometimes we get so caught up in our daily routines, we forget to let those close to us know how much we love and appreciate them and thereby, growing that love.
Love is as simple as smiling at someone walking toward us, someone in front or behind us in the checkout line or someone standing next to us in an elevator. Sounds innocent enough, but what we really can be doing is secretly telling them “I love you” with that smile. It may be the difference maker in their life. “What the world needs now is love sweet love” — thanks, Dionne Warwick, for that reminder, but thanks be to God for His example of LOVE: “For God so LOVED the world that He gave His only begotten son…” John 3:16.
How about we make a commitment to “grow our love for others and then give it away” — to those people in our life who inspire us, support us, assist us, feed us, nurture us, care for us, pray for us, protect us, laugh with us and cry with us? They have shared the magnificent journey of our life with us. So, to put an exclamation point at the end of the title “Grown with Love” — let’s purpose to grow the love in our corner of the world. Let me start by saying “I LOVE YOU”, my FB friends and family. You mean the world to me! You make my world such a sweet place to live and love. You put a smile on my face and you give me so many joys! May you know God’s love in tangible and beautiful ways….not just Valentine’s Day, but ALWAYS!”
1 John 4:7 “Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.”