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On Valentine’s Day, I was talking with my sister over the phone about the holiday hoopla. Honestly, as a single for many years, this day isn’t something you look forward to each year. Watching others receive flowers, chocolates, and romantic dinners can leave one longing for "that" special day filled with love and romance. However, this year was different. We both decided to focus on giving instead of receiving. Isn't this the ultimate love story between God and His creation?
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
(John 3:16 NIV)
This year, I spent my Valentine’s morning serving breakfast at the Salvation Army homeless shelter. When I got there, I had this overwhelming sense of appreciation for the regular workers and volunteers who daily put their hearts and souls into serving the less fortunate. The time seemed to fly by as we laughed and fellowshipped together with the residents. I hadn’t felt that good in a long time. You could feel the love in the room. The Holy Spirit always speaks when we are open to listen. Here’s what I heard:
“Serving others took the emphasis off of me and what I wasn’t getting.”
That act of service renewed my mind to think more like God and less like me. Sometimes it’s really easy to get caught up in life. We all do it—married or single. Our thoughts can be consumed with our careers, finances, families, dreams, and the list goes on.

But, let’s stay focused on the greatest gift, which is charity. Charity is the only way to cure the “I” syndrome. True love is evidenced by giving. Although it is perfectly fine to receive, this is not God’s ultimate desire. 
In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’
(Acts 20:35 NIV)
The more we give of our time, talents, and resources for His purposes, the more we become like Him. And, this is what He really wants for us.

If you have found yourself struggling lately in this area, here are some quick remedies:
  • Smile at a child.
  • Send a text message to encourage someone.
  • Say a prayer for the person you are driving behind.
  • Pay for someone’s lunch.
  • Let a friend know how much you appreciate them.
In the end, you will leave that situation thinking about how good you made the other person feels and not so much on yourself.

Copyright Saki Milton
All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

Saki Milton
Web site:
Saki resides in Charlotte, NC where she is an active member of Elevation Church. Since joining Elevation, she volunteers in the production ministry. Her mission is to help others practically change their lives through an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ. In her spare time, she writes inspiring words about everyday life on her blog, Cupasaki.

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