I still remember the first time I told a girl that I wanted to marry her. I was 10 years old and we were playing hide and go seek in the parsonage where my family lived. She and I were hiding in a closet and there, in the dark, I brought up the condition of our relationship. I’ve always tried to talk things through and make sure that others are on the same page as me. I informed her that I loved her and that I had made up my mind. We were going to get married some day. She agreed, saying that she loved me too. That day a promise was made. A week later, however, my family and I were on a commercial jet, moving to another country. My life changed in ways I had no control over. My love was an empty promise that I had no way of keeping.

This month, the world around us is celebrating love. Everywhere we turn, there are hearts and balloons and teddy bears and chocolate. But the love the world is celebrating is a lot like the love I had for that girl so many years ago – full of empty promises that can never be fulfilled. The only true love is found in the God who gave His Son to die on a cross. In the Bible, we read, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). This God promised a love that was so great, it would cost Him His Son – and He fulfilled it. His promise wasn’t empty. Won’t you accept the promise of His love today?

A recipient of love,

Pastor Sutherland

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