So far we have examined three of the love languages. The fourth language described by Gary Chapman and Ross Campbell in The Five Love Languages is gifts. Chapman and Campbell state “a true gift is not payment for services rendered; rather, it is an expression of love for the individual and is freely given by the donor.” A gift is not tied to actions, such as the giving of a gift when your child cleans her room. Gifts should be conditional.
Notice these statements about children with the primary love language of gifts:
- Children are not concerned with the size and cost of the gift.
- Children see gifts as expressions of love.
- Children may get excited about school supplies and clothes if they are presented in the right manner.
- Parents need to be selective in what they give their children, advertisements can manipulate parents into giving too much.
- “Not every toy needs to be educational, but they should all serve some positive purpose in the life of your children.”
Knowing I would be writing this blog post on Sunday afternoon, I purposely observed the children in my Sunday School class. I am currently teaching in a four-year-old class, however most of the children are turning five (the age at wish love languages begin to emerge). I notice several who seem to have the primary love language of physical touch. These children loved to sit on the floor with me or one of the other teachers, sitting as close as possible. Two girls seem to be developing the language of quality time. They loved to have Mr. Tom sit and talk with them. The two kids I noticed the most were Kevin and Danielle. Our preschool minister had placed small “thank-you” gifts in the room for all of the teachers. Kevin noticed the gifts first. He asked, “Who are these for?” I told him they were thank-you gifts for the teachers. He said, “That was nice of Mrs. Kim to give you those. Getting cookies is a good gift.” Kevin continued to explain how nice the gift was. Finally, Danielle said, “I like to get gifts.” I continued the conversation by asking, “what are some of the gifts you have gotten?” Danielle and Kevin both listed a variety of gifts they had received, include why they had received the gift (birthday, Christmas, or “just because”) and from whom they had received the gifts. I thought to myself, Kevin and Danielle are both developing the love language of gifts.
Who do you know who has the love language of gifts? If it is your spouse, make sure you speak her/his love language this week. If it is one of your children, speak to them in ways they understand. Remember – it is not the size of the gift that counts, but the act of giving the gift.
What is the most special gift you have ever received? How did it speak to your love language?