Welcome to iwantthemtoremember.com! This is the sixth day of a week of Valentine’s Devotions for Families using Biblical passages on love.
If your family is at all like mine, you need Biblical reminders of how to love one another all year long, but the Valentine season is a great time to emphasize God’s teachings on love. Spend a week in February (or anytime really) encouraging your family to love with Valentine’s devotions. I suggest you start the Sunday before Valentine’s and celebrate love all week, but you can use them however is best for your family. Links for each day will be added at the end of this post as they are complete. I pray these Valentine’s Devotions bless your family in Christ.
Click here to start with Day One.
Do you love yourself? (Wait for responses) We don’t usually think about loving ourselves, because that might mean we are selfish, arrogant, or proud– things we discussed on Day Two as a part of what love isn’t. Think for a minute about how you treat yourself.
Name out loud as many things as you can think of that you do for yourself on a regular basis. Keep a count as family members call out actions. Example: brush your teeth, shower, take medicine, hobbies, eat, drink, etc.
You probably don’t do those things for anyone else unless you are a parent or possibly an older sibling. You don’t brush your neighbor’s teeth or blow your friend’s nose. You do a lot of things necessary to take care of yourself as well as a lot of things just to please yourself. These show we do actually love ourselves.
But that’s okay. If you area to love your neighbor as yourself, you must love yourself.
“Love your neighbor as yourself.”
We have read these words from Jesus several times this week. As He quoted the Old Testament command to love God, He also reminded His listeners to “love your neighbor as yourself.”
This command was first given by God in Leviticus 19:18. The New Testament writers, led by the Holy Spirit, remind us that this one command covers the requirements of the law in our relationships with others.
For the whole Law is fulfilled in one word, in the statement, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Galatians 5:14
If, however, you are fulfilling the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing well. James 2:8
Most of the time the emphasis is rightly on loving your neighbor, but today we are going to look at what the verse implies: You should love yourself. If we are to love our neighbor as we love ourselves, we need to look at why and how we love ourselves.
Why love yourself?
You love yourself because you are made in the image of God.
Read Genesis 1:27-31. Man is called the crowing glory of God’s creation. We are unique above all else He created. The sun, moon, and stars which display His glory, the land and sea which complement perfectly, the creatures of all kinds who obey completely, and even the angels who serve continually only show a glimpse of what the Creator is like. As human beings, we are made in His image–there is something about us that shows a little bit of what God is like. We reflect a small part of His glory.
You love yourself because God made you wonderfully.
Read Psalm 139:13-14. The human body is so amazingly complex. Many scientists want us to believe all of the things that make us unique from animals happened by chance. God tells us He was intimately involved in creating each and everyone of us.
You love yourself because Christ died for You.
Read Romans 5:6-8. We do not love ourselves because there is anything good in us. Jesus loved and died for us when we were still in our sin. His grace poured out on us in love. He showed we are worth dying for.
Look at how you love yourself to see how to love your neighbor.
So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. Ephesians 5:29
We don’t usually think that we love ourselves, but the things we do daily show it. In the opening activity we listed things we do for ourselves. We nourish and cherish our own bodies. We make sure we are comfortable, well fed, warm, clean, entertained, and much more. When we love our neighbor we want the same for them, or even more so. It becomes more important for others to be comfortable, well fed, warm, clean, and entertained than for us to have those things.
Of course, we can take loving ourselves too far. We must be careful not to become conceited and guard our heart against selfishness that comes so naturally. Remember, this attitude is the opposite of love. Paul warns Timothy that the time is coming (and is here) when people will be lovers of self rather than lovers of God. (2 Timothy 3:1-7)This is obviously not what God intends. He calls us to deny ourselves.
Family Affirmation and Application
Ask each family member to look around at the others and say, “I want to love you as I love myself.”
Try hard to keep loving others first in your mind and look for ways you can give up your wants for their benefit. Strive to be so confident in who you are in Christ that you can put others first in true humility without putting yourself down. When someone does this for you, be sure to notice and thank him or her for loving you.
Worship through Song
If time permits, listen to one of the following songs.
Father, thank you for creating us in Your image and for loving us enough to send Jesus even though we are sinners. When we are discouraged and down on ourselves, remind us of how we are uniquely created by you with a purpose. Help us to truly love others as we love ourselves, beginning in our family. In Jesus name, amen.
More Valentine’s Devotions for Families
Thank you for joining me for Valentine’s Devotions for Families. I am sharing this with my children and youth group because I want them to remember the importance of living a life of love. I hope it helps your loved ones remember as well.
To continue with Seven Days of Valentine’s Devotions for Families see the links below.
Day One: Without Love
Day Two: Love Is . . .
Day Three: How He Loves
Day Four: Love God
Day Five: Love Others
Day Six: Love Yourself
Day Seven: True Love