The 5 Love Languages – Receiving Gifts
Great Morning Beloved!
The 5 Love Languages – Receiving Gifts
Happy Earth Day.
The first ‘official’ Earth Day took place in 1970. On that day, 20 million people in the US took to the streets to demand a clean environment, free of pollution. Within the year, the US had established the Environmental Protection Agency, the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act and the Species Protection Act. Earth Day is now observed in 192 countries and is coordinated by the nonprofit Earth Day Network, chaired by the first Earth Day organizer Denis Hayes.
Earth Day is now the largest secular holiday in the world, celebrated by more than a billion people every year.
We’ll talk a bit more about our Mother Earth later.
Here’s a story from Dr. Chapman’s book……
Erik spent a year in Kelsey’s “friend zone” before she agreed to go out with him. Since they were both big baseball fans, Erik took her to a minor-league game. They were sitting in a grassy area beyond the left-field fence when suddenly a hard-hit drive came their way. Erik jumped up and made an impressive barehanded catch—his first home-run grab ever. Two days later Kelsey found a gift-wrapped package outside her dorm room. She opened it and found a baseball in a small plastic collector’s display case. Taped to the inside of the case was a ticket stub from the game. Inscribed on the ball was the date of the game and these words:
1st home-run catch….2nd best thing to happen to me that day
They were married two years after that first date. Fifteen years later that baseball, still in its display case, sits on Kelsey’s dresser where she can see it every day. It is the first thing she would grab if the house were on fire.
If you didn’t figure it out, this week, our Love Language is Receiving Gifts.
A gift is something you can hold in your hand and say, “Look, he was thinking of me,” or, “She remembered me.” You must be thinking of someone to give him a gift.
The gift itself is a symbol of that thought. It doesn’t matter whether it costs money. What is important is that you thought of the gift and expressed that thought in securing the gift and giving it as the expression of love.
In every culture studied by Dr. Chapman, and there were many, gift giving was a part of the love-marriage process. It is a fundamental expression of love that transcends cultural barriers.
From early years, children are inclined to give gifts to their parents, which may be another indication that gift giving is fundamental to love.
Even those of us who do not have our own children can probably recall a gift given from a child…even if it’s a shy smile from one across the aisle in a store.
These gifts are visual symbols of love. And symbols have emotional value. In a wedding ceremony, the giving and receiving of rings indicates a symbol.
The person performing the ceremony says, “These rings are outward and visible signs of an inward and spiritual bond that unites your two hearts in love that has no end.” That is not meaningless rhetoric.
Perhaps they have an even more graphic display near the end of a disintegrating marriage when the rings are removed…and sometimes tossed at the other….
However, visual symbols of love are more important to some people than to others. There are many married couples who did not exchange rings and sometimes, if they did, one or both may have chosen to not wear it for whatever reason. Hopefully, this was discussed BEFORE the ring was removed in Affirming Words, so both understand the reasoning behind the action, most often for safety reasons.
If your spouse, partner, or special friend didn’t receive many gifts growing up, they may never have learned how to select gifts. It may not come naturally for them.
However, giving gifts is one of the easiest love languages to learn.
Where do you begin? Make a list of all the gifts your spouse has expressed excitement about receiving through the years. They may be gifts you have given or gifts given by other family members or friends. The list will give you an idea of the kind of gifts your spouse would enjoy receiving.
If you need to, recruit help. Ask family and friends to give you suggestions.
Don’t wait for a special occasion.
Gifts don’t have to be expensive. The cost of the gift will matter little, unless it is out of line with what you can afford. If a millionaire spends a few dollars on a gift, the spouse may question whether that is an expression of love, but when family finances are limited, a one-dollar gift may speak a million dollars’ worth of love.
You may have to change your attitude about money.
Each of us has a perception of the purposes of money, and we have various emotions associated with spending it. Some of us have a spending orientation. We feel good about ourselves when we are spending money.
Others have a saving and investing perspective. We feel good about ourselves when we are saving money and investing it wisely.
However, purchasing gifts for him or her is the best investment you can make. You are investing in your relationship and filling your spouse’s emotional love tank, and with a full love tank, he or she will likely reciprocate emotional love to you in a language you will understand. When both persons’ emotional needs are met, your relationship will take on a whole new dimension.
There is an intangible gift that sometimes speaks more loudly than a gift that can be held in one’s hand. Chapman calls it the gift of self or the gift of presence.
Being there when your spouse needs you speaks loudly to the one whose primary love language is receiving.
Physical presence in the time of crisis is the most powerful gift you can give to one who’s love language is receiving gifts…your body becomes a symbol of your love.
Last week we talked about the Love Language of Quality Time. This ‘gift of presence’ is very similar to that, the difference being, it is not planned time, but something has come up and plans and work may have to be changed to “BE” with your loved one.
Thich Nhat Hanh – “If you love someone, the greatest gift you can give them is your presence.”
I can remember a situation when I asked my partner to forgo a scheduled card game because I felt the need to be supported during an emotional situation. That person chose to go to the card game and left me to fend for myself. Obviously, I survived, yet I can still feel that emotion of not being important enough.
“Understanding someone’s suffering is the best gift you can give another person. Understanding is love’s other name. If you don’t understand, you can’t love.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
So, choose how you relate to the important people in your life…take note to what you both need, no matter the relationship. Even casual friends need your support. Be aware and if you are able, spread some love.
The spirit of giving is one of God’s greatest gifts. The mere act itself is divine love in action
One of the many gifts we all have is the Gift of the Earth.
It’s perfect that Receiving Gifts is the topic for today’s lesson. What a gift we have in the planet where we live.
AS I mentioned at the beginning of todays Lesson, Earth Day is today. It officially started in 1970, but the stirring of Earth Day started before that as scientists and politicians started grassroots demonstrations held at the Spring Equinox.
Every year a theme is presented and worked on by those involved with Earth Day. This year the theme is End Plastic Pollution.
Plastic pollution has become a major issue because of our use of easily disposable products. From poisoning and injuring marine life to disrupting human hormones, from littering our beaches and landscapes to clogging our waste streams and landfills, the exponential growth of plastics is now threatening the survival of our planet
Plastic is composed of major toxic pollutants, potentially causing harm to our air, water and land.
Obviously, plastic is an incredibly useful material, but it is also made from toxic compounds known to cause illness, and because it is meant for durability, it is not biodegradable.
We all know what we can do to help alleviate this issue…but are we doing it?
Here are some reminders:
1. Shop Friendly
Plastic bags were once a modern convenience but can be efficiently replaced by reusable bags, many of which fold up compactly in order to be portable. Just think about how many bags you typically carry out of a grocery store and multiply that by the number of times you grocery shop. That’s a lot of plastic! Carry a bag and always reuse plastic bags as much as possible if you have them.
2. Get Rid of Bottled Water
People are meant to drink lots of water each day, and plastic water bottles have become a great way to stay hydrated throughout the day. However, most of these are only recommended for single use, and that means that every time someone finishes a bottle it goes into the trash. Many companies now sell reusable water bottles as a substitute, reducing plastic waste
3. Forget to-go Containers
You would be surprised at how much plastic is involved in the making and packaging of food containers. Think the coffee shop’s drink cup is paper? It’s likely lined with plastic for insulation.
Plastic food containers, lids, and utensils are all easily replaced by reusable containers, which will cut down significantly on even a single meal’s waste.
4. Educate Businesses
Speak to local restaurants and businesses about options that they can switch to for packaging, storing, and bagging items. Many companies are starting to come up with excellent low-cost replacements, such as bamboo utensils in place of plastic ones.
5. Get Involved
Speak to lawmakers and get involved with government on any level, and you’ll see how many special interest groups have made it so that we are dependent on plastic without needing to be. Encourage development of items and propose alternatives when applicable.
6. Recycle Everything
Try and select items that come in non-plastic recycled and recyclable packaging, to do your best to properly handle items that can’t be reused. Check everything before you put it in the trash, as more and more items can be recycled these days.
Remember that because plastic doesn’t break down easily (if ever), recycling plastic means that it is still plastic, just being used for a different purpose. Therefore, you’re not actually reducing plastic amounts or exposure, even in the recycling process.
What more can be done?
Blessing for today:
May all who enter this house feel truly welcome, just as they are.
May all who enter this house dwell in ease of body and mind.
May all who enter this house feel the comfort of belonging to family.
May all who enter this house receive that which truly nourishes.
May all who enter this house be inspired to communicate that which is honest and true.
May all who enter this house know that in this place they may rest, free of judgment, scorn or expectation.
May all who enter this house feel the trees, the sky, the light and the birds surrounding and supporting them.
May we all take the strength and goodness we receive here and
Share it with the world.