Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. 1 John 3:18 (NLT)

It was not the first time but this time it made me stop and think when Mark said, “I love you but I don’t think you understand how much.” My immediate response was, “I love you, too,” but in the back of my mind, I wondered about his follow up comment. Why didn’t I understand? How does love express itself?

One of the things I learned as I read The Five Love Languages is each person speaks and hears love differently and it is vital to learn the love language of your spouse if your efforts are going to mean anything. It might be a card with words of affirmation and affection. Or maybe it is getting the Honey-Do list done. Try catching the hand of your honey as you walk down the street or bringing home a small bouquet of flowers. And for some, just sitting down and giving uninterrupted attention and conversation makes the heart of your mate sing.

It takes work to make this happen because we naturally speak to our spouse with our personal love language. The problem occurs when our expressions of love fall flat and he doesn’t get it. He missed all the effort I made and sometimes, even criticizes it. What good is that? In his book, Gary Chapman encourages each person to discover his particular way of expressing love and then talk about it together. If I know that Mark needs to hear “good job” or snagging him and planting a big kiss as he walks through the kitchen then I need to be careful to do it. Bringing home several bags from Nordstrom for him is just not going to make it.

So, pay attention. Does your honey understand how much you love them? Are you speaking their love language?

One more question. Do you have any concept of how much God loves you? He doesn’t go half way. In fact, He gave up His son, willingly, for each of us so that we could know Him and be part of His family. And because He made us and knows how we think, He always speaks our love language. How do we show love back to Him? Spend time with Him…worship Him…obey Him…listen to Him…enjoy His presence…tell Him. “Jesus loves me, this I know.”