This Thursday marks the annual celebration of Valentine’s Day!

(Guys, you’re welcome for the reminder.)

People all across the US and in other places around the world will take this day to express their love and affection for others. Some will use candy, others will use cards or flowers, and still others, the more romantic of us, might look for more creative and elaborate ways to let that special person know they are loved. The National Retail Foundation estimates that over 18.2 billiondollars will be spent on this holiday. Of that, 1.7 billion will be spent on candy alone! Love is a booming business when it comes to Valentine’s Day.

Whether we personally love, hate, or are indifferent about Valentine’s Day, there is one thing we can’t deny, people have a desire to love and be loved. This holiday reminds us of that! No matter who we are or where we are from, we all have this desire ingrained in our DNA. We want to know we are valued. We want to know that someone cares. And we want others to know this as well.

While candy, cards, flowers, and gifts can express love, the greatest expression of love for you and me didn’t come wrapped in a bow or heart shaped box. It came in the person of Jesus.

“For God so loved the worldthat he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” – John 3:16

Because of his love for us, God sent us Jesus. Jesus came to live a perfect life, die a sacrificial death, and be raised to life again from the grave giving us the way to eternal life. All of this he did because of love. Look at the what Jesus said about this:

“Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” – John 15:13

This is exactly what Jesus did for us. He laid down his life on the cross for you and for me. He gave all he had so we could experience love in the greatest way possible! Have you embraced the love of God found only through faith in Jesus? No valentine can ever give you what can only be found in Jesus.

So, as you celebrate Valentine’s Day this year, take time to share your love with others. But more importantly, take time to be reminded of God’s love for you in Jesus! He is the greatest gift we could ever receive!