“Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Those who believe in him are not condemned; but those who do not believe are condemned already, because they have not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, so that their deeds may not be exposed. But those who do what is true come to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that their deeds have been done in God.”
- Vicki Tornetta
Several years ago I received a precious Christmas gift. I unwrapped the gift and surprisingly discovered a children’s book, Goodnight Moon. I frequently read Goodnight Moon to our four children when they were toddlers and can still recite the book in its entirety. I smiled as I opened the book, quickly discovering handwritten notes from our four grown children. As I read the heartfelt expressions of love and gratitude written on the inside cover of the book my heart melted and I cried. I have received many special gifts during my lifetime, but the gift of Goodnight Moon was priceless, because it was a gift given out of love.
The most incomprehensible gift ever given out of love was the gift that God gave us, His Only Son.
“For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life.” John 3:16 (Amplified Bible)
John 3:16 is perhaps the best-known and most familiar Bible verse, it is found on banners at sporting events, highway graffiti, tattoos and bumper stickers. Does the familiarity of John 3:16 cause you to miss the wonderful truth of God’s great gift of love?
This is the season for giving gifts. Perhaps, right now you are distracted, spending significant time, energy, and financial resources to discover the perfect gift for a friend or family member. Unfortunately, we give for countless reasons other than love. We give out of obligation, expectations, and tradition, just to name a few.
However, God gave out of the unfathomable depths of His love for you and the world. God’s love is expressed in a gift, His most precious possession, His Only Son. If love is measured by the value of the gift, what does that say about God’s love for you and the world? Ask God to open your eyes and heart to His love for you and the world today.
"How Deep The Father's Love For Us"
How deep the Father's love for us,
How vast beyond all measure
That He should give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure
Father, Thank you for your deep and vast love for us. Thank you for everlasting life. I pray that we may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth of Your love. I pray that we would know the love of Christ that surpasses all knowledge and be filled with all the fullness of God. May we cling to You! Strengthen us with power through your Spirit in our inner being, so that Christ may dwell in our hearts through faith. Amen. (Based on Ephesians 3:14-19)
Vicki Tornetta is the proud mother of four children, Jon Mark(25), Sarah(23), Dan(21) and Stephen Jr.(18). She currently resides in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania with her loving husband and best friend, Steve. Vicki graduated Cum Laude in 1989 from the University of Delaware with a Bachelors of Science in International Relations. Vicki is a stay-at-home mom who is passionate about discipling women, teaching and studying the Bible and volunteering in the community and serving in her church. Currently Vicki serves on two non-profit boards: 2200 Arch Counseling Services and YoungLives of the Delaware Valley. Vicki is a ski coach for Somerset County, New Jersey Special Olympics, enjoys cooking, spending time with family and friends, exercising, traveling and reading.