February is the month of love for most of us in America. Whether you find it overly commercialized or incredibly romantic, either way you’re likely buying some flowers or chocolates or planning a nice dinner with your significant other.
If you have kids, you’re probably scrolling through Pinterest, trying to find a cute idea for celebrating Valentine’s Day with them. Hearts on their bedroom door… heart-shaped pancakes at breakfast… cute little cards… there are a lot of ideas out there!
But what if we focused our eyes, (and hearts), on God this month and used this as a good reminder to show God’s love to our spouses and children?
Or, if you aren’t married with kids, you can show God’s love to your co-workers, your friends, your parents, or your siblings. Maybe even to the check-out clerk at the grocery store.
Here are 5 simple ways to show God’s love to your family in February as you focus on all things heart-shaped.
1. Practice the Pause.
This is one of my favorite sayings. And one of the hardest things to remember to do in a heated moment! But if we can remember to take the time to pause before we speak or react, chances are we’ll do it in a much gentler, loving way.
And it takes practice! It’s not easy to remember to pause when your anger is about to boil over. But if you can take just a couple of seconds to breathe and focus on what you’re about to do next, it’ll make all the difference.
“Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.” — James 1:19–20
2. Serve them!
Do something unexpected for your family. If you’re a wife and mom, then things like dishes, laundry, and cooking dinner are all expected. But what if you took on one of your kid’s chores for a week? Or did something extra for your husband… like cooked his favorite meal or surprised him with a candlelit night in the bedroom?
We all feel loved when someone surprises us with unexpected help or something we enjoy. What can you do this month to serve your family or friends?
“Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered.” — Proverbs 11:25
3. Pray for Them Daily.
I recently started a new practice where I pray for my kids and my husband every morning after they’ve left the house for school and work. I go into each other their rooms and pray for them, out loud. I thank God for putting them into this family and then ask for help, strength, and protection for them based on whatever they’re currently going through.
Prayer is incredibly powerful and is the best way you can help and love your family. Or friends! God loves for us to come to Him with praise and petition.
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” Matthew 7:7
4. Share God’s Word.
What could be more important for your children them teaching God’s word and helping them get to know and love Jesus? Find a kid’s devotional and do it together over a meal. Look up some fun Christian videos that break down the gospel to their level. Practice memorizing verses about His love for us.
With your spouse, you could start a new devotional together. Pray together nightly. Or, if you’re praying or doing a devotional on your own, share something that you’ve learned. It might inspire him to get into God’s word more!
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.” — 2 Timothy 3:16–17
5. Focus on Humility in the Tough Moments
Similar to practicing the pause, this one is specifically talking about focusing on your own humility. Our flesh causes us to be so prideful, often assuming we’re right and the other person is wrong. Take some extra time this month to check in on your heart and whether you’re acting out of pride more often than not.
If you find yourself having a prideful reaction, apologize! Even to your children. Help them see that you’re human and not perfect and that you need God’s love and help just as much as they do.
Taking an entire month to focus on being more humble and less prideful can create a habit of humility, so it will become like second-nature to you moving forward.
“When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.” — Proverbs 11:2
It’s easy to view Valentine’s Day as just another commercialized holiday but anything that makes us focus more on love and less on hate is worthy, in my opinion!
If you start implementing these 5 steps towards showing God’s love to your family, maybe they’ll become a habit that continues through every month of the year!