Title: “Happy Hearts & Treasures”
Author: JoyPals.com-ReformedWomen, Editor-Publisher
“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”
February 14 is the day we celebrate Valentines Day, the “happy heart” or “sweetheart” day. The special one in which we demonstrate the love we have for another. I am reminded of past Valentine celebrations with red heart-shaped boxes of yummy chocolates, long-stem red roses, a moving verse in a lovingly chosen card, heart-shaped cakes deliciously prepared for the family dessert and, last but not least, those cherished “happy bubble heart” homemade Valentine cards given to us by the children. It is these “happy hearts” and what they represent that I want to share about here.
Our children loved to draw “happy bubble hearts” on their handmade Valentine cards to us. They would draw two hearts, big and puffy flowing into one another with the words “I love you” and their favorite “heart” verse from the Bible, signed proudly with their name and several “little” hearts with arrows through them just for good measure. They would then “post” them all over the house, on our bedroom door, the fridge, doorways and every other place they could think of. They rejoiced for each one that we found and the joy they brought us. This was their special way of demonstrating their love to us on Valentines Day. They knew these “happy hearts” would become treasures and reminders to us of their love.
As I recall those special Valentine days, I am reminded of a much greater gift of the “heart” – the gift of Christ and His love. The Bible tells us that Christ “demonstrated” His love for us in that “while we were yet sinners” He “died for us” so that we would have life eternal. Not because of anything good in us but because of His amazing love and grace. Like our children who gave us “happy hearts” “just because” we were mommy and daddy and love us in spite of us, Christ gave Himself for us because He loves us with an everlasting love. The “Worthy” gave to the unworthy and we received the gift of a new heart — one that He fills with love for God and others. His love was demonstrated by giving. It was active and it gave Him joy to give it. It is through this gift of His love and a new heart that we can demonstrate our love:
“And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:30-31 “Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.” I John 4:7-11
Love is demonstrative – it gives and in the giving, it is joyful and “fills up” and “runs over” in our hearts. “Give, and it shall be given unto you, good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom [“heart”]” It is just like when we received those treasured “happy hearts” from our children, we felt a “joy” and a heart full of love for them that we could just pop. This full heart can also be described as a “burning heart” – one that is filled to the brim with love that goes deep within. The disciples understood this well: “And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the Scriptures?” Their hearts were hearts “filled” with love for Christ and joy in hearing and understanding His Word. They learned, as we do, that by giving we receive. A “happy heart” then is a “joyful giving heart,” one that is joined together in love for Christ and others.
As we think of these things, we are reminded that the love of God as defined and described in all of its meanings in God’s Word is wonderful. We all have favorite passages that teach blessed truths about God’s love and how we are to love as His children. There are not enough books in the world that could be written to cover such a glorious subject but it is one in which we should delight and seek to study and understand. It is basic to our understanding of God and why we are to love. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones in his marvelous book “The Heart of the Gospel” points us to Christ and His atoning work on the cross as the foundation of love and happiness and shows us that through Christ’s giving, we receive. Dr. Sinclair Ferguson in his little book, “A Heart for God” says that a loving heart is one that “yearns to grow ever closer to Christ in a living relationship,” one in which the knowledge of God is paramount. He goes on to say “knowledge of God is really the heart of all true understanding in the Christian life and this “knowledge of God is our greatest privilege.” Thus, a heart that has knowledge of God will love and worship God and the result will be a “heart filled” with love for others. It bears the fruit of a Christ-filled heart. And finally, Leon Morris in “Testaments of Love, A Study of Love in the Bible,” says: “Love begets love. When God’s love reaches us, it transforms us. Truly understanding what Christ did in dying for us and truly responding to that love means becoming a different person.”
Valentine’s Day is a wonderful day to demonstrate love in a special way to others. For Christians, every day is Valentine’s Day. Each day is an opportunity for “happy hearts” to demonstrate their love for God and neighbor and every day is a day of happiness and rejoicing because Christ dwells therein.
“Come Thou fount of every blessing, tune my heart to sing Thy grace….
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above.”