While I am a very frugal person, I have a huge weakness
When my kids were young, I used lots of paper and styrofoam plates. I always stocked up on my supply when they were on sale. Standing in the check out line one day I realized how much money I was spending on paper plates. So right then and there I quit.
No more paper plates. Occasionally, maybe… but for the most part I just don’t stock paper plate. I have a picnic basket with plastic plates, so even for picnics I don’t use paper plates.
But….I buy dishes.
I catch them on sale–bargain basement prices. Often 75% or even 90% off.
I find them in yard sales and thrift shops. And I use them! I love, love, love to set a beautiful table.
It’s a way that I have of showing my husband, my children, grandchildren, family and friends that they are special to me. My love language is “Acts of Service, so setting a beautiful table is part of serving those I love. (And cooking a meal that isn’t burned is a nice act of service too! LOL)
Most of my dishes are marked on the back with a trademark. Some are recognizable and some are small unknown manufacturers.
The trademark tells us some important things:
- It distinguishes their product from other manufacturers.
- Identifies it’s maker.
- Identifies its value.
The significance of a trademark is important whether it is a dish, a car or a painting. If you’ve ever watched Antiques Roadshow you know the first thing an appraiser looks for is a manufacturers trademark or the signature on a painting or work of art. Sometimes the trademark is in a inconspicuous place. Sometimes it is marred or painted over.
Finding a trademark or a signature that identifies a renown painter or famous manufacturer causes even the most dignified appraisers to glow with delight. Owners often gasp and shake their heads in total amazement to discover the value they possess.
And the Number 1 Trademark in the Universe is Love.
God’s Trademark is Love
God is love.
He doesn’t have love. He is love. And if we want to know what’s it’s really like we have to discover who God is.
Our best portrait of love falls painfully short of describing what love really is like.
It is not the twisted self-seeking love displayed in the movies.
Real love is pure.
Love is self-less.
Love is enduring.
It finds its source in a spring beyond human capacity.
It’s not plastic or fragile. It doesn’t snap or wear out.
Love is a bubbling spring hidden in the heart of God, released and flowing to and through human containers.
Love brings life.
Love causes talents to bloom
Love births hope.
It is a magnet that brings the best out of people.
The power of love is breath-taking to behold.
…God loved the world so much… John 3:16a
God loves you.
I know. I know.!
You’ve heard it a million times, but there is a huge difference in hearing it and knowing it… really knowing that fact makes all the difference.
“so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love,”
Being rooted in the understanding of that reality nourishes our emotions, our faith, our hopes.
You are loved. You are special.
God has a plan for your life and it’s a good plan.
His love marks us like lipsticked lips. It marks our attitudes…our choices…our actions… our lives.
His love identifies us as His…servant…friend…family…child. That’s it, His child!
It labels us as valuable…priceless…works of art…treasures.
That’s why worship, deep heartfelt worship is so important.
Worship takes us into the presence of God where we can feel His love.
Experience His love at a new level. Being rooted in His love means that His love begins to nourish who we are, building in us what people call self-confidence.
I say, “what people call self-confidence;” because it is much deeper than self-awareness. God’s love produces a confidence that enables us to live loved, being who we were really meant by God to be. Confident. Hopeful. Loving. Giving. Being all God planned.
A decadent truth to savor.
Regardless of what you may have been told or even believed,
you are not an accident or a mistake.
You were not a mistake, for all your days are written in my book. Psalm 139:15-16
God wanted you to be born.
God made you to connect with His love.
But you have to receive His love.
God will not force His love on you.
He will not violate your will.
But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: John 1:12
And when you receive His love, you’ll become a conduit of that love.
Jesus said in John 15:35 “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”
They’ll see His trademark on your life!
I have a special love story that I want to share with you on Friday. I told you last week, that I had been struggling to get the story right for weeks now. It’s not perfect. And maybe it won’t make sense, but I sure hope it communicates to you, what it does to me!