Posted on November 7th, by Bonnie in Blog. No Comments

Three-year-old granddaughter Grace asked, “Can we make a birthday card for Papa Joel?” “Well, of course,” I replied. I collected the old greeting cards, scissors, glue and markers as she settled at the table ready to create.

“What kind of pictures do you think Papa Joel would like?” I asked. “Boats, Papa Joel likes boats,” Grace replied assuredly. The card came together with boats, Charlie Brown and Grace’s signature of a backwards G.

Grace then asked, “Could we decorate the house for Papa Joel’s birthday?” She went to my desk area and picked up a pad of pink, heart shaped sticky notes. “I could use these,” she said with a pleading look. Relieved I didn’t have to figure out how we were going to decorate, I quickly replied, “Sure, you can use the hearts.”

From the kitchen, to the living room, to bedrooms and finally the bathroom, walls, windows and furniture were decorated with pink sticky hearts. Of course they were mostly 3 feet off the ground, eye level for Grace. Papa Joel came home delighted as Grace, proud and pleased, shared all her loving creations.

Joel’s birthday celebration has come and gone but the hearts and cards remain happily displayed in our home. All are reminders of love shared. The cards held in our hands and read, as well as the hearts visualized each morning we awaken, make us happily smile. Science tells us healing hormones are released in greater measure within our body as we consider being sincerely loved. Joel and I gladly receive this free prescription for greater health in our mind and body.

These visual reminders of love have given me pause to ponder the eternal evidence of God’s love around me. His beautiful creation is ever before me. His love letter fills a book. He happily and freely gifted us with all.

However, his selfless and healing love cost him great suffering and pain. But, he willingly gave it all for the same reason Grace did, the joyful sharing of sincere and healing love.

He was willing to die a shameful death on the cross because of the joy he knew would be his afterward… Think about all he endured when sinful people did such terrible things to him, so that you don’t become weary and give up. (NLT: Hebrews 12: 2 – 3)

But he was wounded and crushed for our sins. He was beaten that we might have peace. He was whipped, and we were healed! (NLT: Isaiah 53: 5 – 6)

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