The Greatest Gift of Love Is Attention
The Bible says in Galatians 6:10, “Give special attention to those who are in the family of believers” (NCV). So why do people in the family of God get special attention?
Because whatever you pay attention to is going to grow. If I pay attention to my garden, it’s going to grow. If I pay attention to my kids, they’re going to grow. If I pay attention to my marriage, it’s going to grow. If I pay attention to my work, it’s going to grow.
What is the greatest gift of love? It’s not diamonds, flowers, or chocolate. The greatest gift of love you can give is focused attention. You can affirm people just by looking them in the eye, which essentially tells them, “I value you. What you have to say is important to me because you matter to me.” What people want more than anything else is focused attention. They want to know that their thoughts matter, that their lives matter, that they are valuable.
The essence of relationships is not what we do for each other or what we give to each other. The essence of relationships is how much of ourselves we give to each other.
I can’t tell you how many men I’ve talked to who said, “I don’t understand it. I provide everything my family needs. I give my wife everything she needs. I give my kids everything they need. What more do they want?”
They want you! They want your time. They want your attention. They want your focus. They want to know that you think they matter. Nothing can replace time. Kids don’t need things; they need time. Marriages need time and friendships need time and small groups need time.
Starting today, look for opportunities to show attention to the people in your life. That is the greatest gift of love you can give! But don’t just wait for it to happen; make opportunities to show attention.
If you have to put it in your schedule, do it. If you have to give up Netflix time, do it. If it means putting off housework, do it. If you have to make sacrifices, do it. Do whatever you need to do to give your relationships attention. It is essential to their growth!