The roses I received for Valentine’s Day made their final journey home. The once vibrant scent had turned to something less enchanting, and it was time to give in and let them go. They looked regal, though spent, on the top of the grass cuttings and raked leaves. As I lowered the lid, I was a little sad. Their colorful company was now gone. Love’s symbol was faded and laid to rest. However, true love does not rest with the roses, but in the heart of the one who gives it.

Many symbols of love surround our life, from simple to complex: a card on our birthday, flowers on our anniversary, the wedding band on our finger. Each is a wonderful reminder of the greater reality—the love relationship that establishes the meaning of the symbol.               

In the journey toward Easter, there are many signs and tokens to remind us of the love of God. These tokens can sometimes lose their meaning and fade with time. What never fades is the One they represent. We cannot associate with Him the weariness we sometime experience from fading symbols.

The Great Lover gave us a cross as a symbol of His love. Though it’s a sign of death and torment, it’s also a gateway to freedom. It is sacrifice and conquest, death and life. We may be weary by familiarity, but the One it points to never fades or diminishes. His love for us and His life in us can only increase and expand:

          Isaiah 9:7 – “There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace.”

The Kingdom we received does not end, fade or fail; it comes in power and life. Symbols are helpful, but they are inadequate to embody the real thing. Let us be renewed in our love relationship with Jesus. This relationship is what makes the symbols of this Easter season rich with meaning. Flowers come and go, but the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases.

Gwen Gibson serves as the Pastor for the HOPE CENTER—the place at HRock where we encourage and offer hope for those struggling through the tough places of life. It is her joy to help others discover the freedom they long for and know how much they are loved by God.