It is almost Valentines weekend and, I am sure, the romantics among us are preparing to lavish love on our chosen valentine. We many be ordering flowers, buying chocolates or other tokens, and have booked in at a restaurant. Valentines is about lavishing love on someone special. John, one of the first followers of Jesus, wants to tell us of the lavish love of God towards us because, in God’s eyes, each one of us is special.

How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears,we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure. 1 John 3:1-3 (The NIV translation)

Those who give the slightest regard to Jesus have the greatest regard from the Father. This is something that I thought a while back while talking with a friend on their faith journey. For some the path of life is smooth and unhampered, but for many of us the way is too often uphill and troubled. My friend has had a rough few years and struggled with following Jesus in the way they know is right. My words were as much for me as for my friend or for anyone else. We can’t out do God in the love we show to, or the regard we have  for, him. He loves us lavishly and it is a shame to miss out on this love. If we aren’t looking for it at all, if we don’t see the benefits of the love God has for his children, we won’t see the benefits of it for ourselves. If Jesus isn’t special to us then we won’t see how special we are to God in Jesus. So we have a choice, we can receive the lavish love of God into our lives as children of God or we can choose to see it as irrelevant or unimportant. Personally speaking, I would rather have the lavish love of God and let the overflow run out to the world than to miss out on something special in my life. If we grasp how special we are in God’s sight then it equips us to show others how special they are to God too.

Lavishly loving God, thank you that you see me as special today. Although my regard for you is not always what it should be, let me increase that regard because I know the high regard you have for me. Let the lavish love that I receive in my life from you today show in the way I lavish your love on others. Amen.