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updated: 2/6/2013 12:23 PM

Lavish words of love on friends and family

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By Annettee Budzban

"For God so loved the world that he gave us his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life."

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--- John 3:16 (NIV)

It's almost Valentine's Day. The words "I love you" are expressed at this time more often than any other day of the year. Many who never hear the words "I love you" may have read them on a card from a friend, classmate or casual acquaintance.

For some people, like myself, the expression of love comes easier. I was blessed to be brought up in a family where we were taught to express our feelings of love through words and actions. My parents frequently told us "I love you" and kissed us good night each night. However, for others, this is not the case.

In the past when talking to a particular friend, I would often say the words, " I love you" at the end of our conversations. One day, after saying those words to her, she replied, "You speak those words so easily, I have a hard time saying them. I wasn't raised in a loving home. Saying, 'I love you' is not something I'm accustomed to doing."

After further discussion, she decided she would like to practice expressing these words more frequently with her family and friends.

We know that love is more than mere words. However, from time to time, we like to hear sincere words of love expressed to us.

Many people are lonely and hurting. But regardless of how we feel, the truth is we are all loved by God.

How does God express his love for us? Though he does bless us, it is not by giving us everything we ask for, or by lavishing us with expensive gifts. God may speak the words "I love you" to us through another person, but the personal expression of his love for each individual was not expressed though words.

It was by sending his son Jesus Christ to earth. Through his death on the cross, in exchange for the forgiveness our sin, God gave us his expression of love. It's extended to everyone.

This Valentine's Day, if you are without another to tell you the words "I love you," know that they have already been spoken to you by our loving Creator. He is the one who will always love you. Give him an expression of your love as well.

I love you precious readers, have a blessed Valentine's Day!

• Annettee Budzban is a Christian author, speaker, life coach and nurse. She will be speaking on "13 steps to Make Your Dreams Realities in 2013" from 3-4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9, at Panera Bread in Round Lake Beach. There is no fee for the conference. Reservations are suggested due to limited seating. Call (847) 543-8413 or email Annetteebudzban@aol.com

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