Saying love without words

Feb 12, 2019 7:00:00 AM / by Deb Hetherington

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Love.

What a wonderful gift from God and a wonderful gift we can share with each other!

The Bible is full of examples of God’s love for us. Jesus role modeled, and taught us many ways to love God and love others ­– some using words and many through loving actions.

Showing love to children sets them up for their future. Studies have shown that children who feel cherished and love thrive, both in their childhood and their future as adults.

Expressing love or compassion for children – or anyone in your life – doesn’t have to be done only with words. There are plenty of non-verbal ways to say “I love you” without speaking anything at all.

Familiar with Dr. Gary Chapman? He coined the five types of love “languages” that defines how people express love – as we all do it a little bit differently. He notes that using words is just one of the languages.

As a ministry leader, it’s important to remember that we all speak different love languages. So, what does that mean for your Sunday school kids? It offers a great lesson in what love means to them in their lives – and their relationship with God.

Bestowing gifts

Gifts, perhaps, come to mind first when people think about the way to express love, especially around Valentine’s Day. Chocolates, candy, flowers… ‘tis the season!

The act of choosing and giving a gift shows the other person we are thinking of them. For your Sunday school kids, you can ask them about when gifts were used to express love or compassion. Use the wise men as an example: what did their gifts mean? How did they express God’s love?

Showing love through service

There are numerous examples in the Bible about how service demonstrates love or compassion! Focusing on this love language could include a way to give back to your community. Visit a local food shelter, create tie blankets for the homeless, or spend a day playing games at an assisted living facility.

Spending quality time

Face to face, side by side, hand in hand. In today’s digital world, connecting away from it can be more challenging than we think! Create a church-home activity for your Sunday school kids, where they focus on spending quality time with a loved one and share what they did.

Did they read their favorite book? Spend time in the kitchen? Go fishing? Whatever it may be, it’s one of the strongest ways to express love.

 

Giving a hug

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Dr. Chapman indicates that some people express and feel love best through physical touch. Expressing your love through hugs literally lets a child feel love wrapped around them. And gentle, human touch is important for healthy brain development, too.

Focusing on words of affirmation

Task your Sunday school kids to come up with words or phrases they can say or use without literally saying the words, “I love you.” Connect it to the Bible and ask them to find examples where God expressed his love for us without using those three words.

 

With all of these ways to express love you should be in no short supply this Valentine's season. Remember that everyone has their own special gifts and qualities, how they share love will always differ from one person to the next. Teaching children to value their talents in this way can be a great way to see their personalities bloom. 

 

Help your Sunday school kids show love to those in their lives with our FREE downloadable Love Notes!

Topics: Children Ministry

Deb Hetherington

Written by Deb Hetherington

Deb is passionate about supporting faith formation for all of God’s children from babies to adults, at church and at home. At Sparkhouse, she has worked on early childhood, story Bibles, Sunday school, music, devotional, and Vacation Bible School products for kids, leaders, and families. She feels blessed to now sing and play with kids as a volunteer in her congregation and on mission trips to Haiti.

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