Christ or Crush? (Gives Great Gifts)

One Valentine’s Day when I was a teen, my boyfriend gave me a little teddy bear and a paperweight that said “Sweetheart” on it. I thought I’d died and gone to heaven!

Maybe you wish your crush would give you a teddy bear, but you’re happy that he gave you a piece of gum once, or that he let you drink some of his pop. You’re thrilled that your crush gave you anything at all!

Well, have you ever stopped to think about what Christ has given you?

I’d love to hear from you. What has your crush given you? What has Christ given you? And what are you looking to your crush to give you that Jesus Christ can’t give to you?

About Author

Paula Marsteller

Paula no longer tries to catch guys' attention by swallowing live goldfish, arm wrestling, and jumping down flights of stairs. (She's married to a wonderful man now!) She spends her days caring for her son, Iren, and writing for Revive Our Hearts. She's the author of Confessions of a Boy-Crazy Girl: On Her Journey from Neediness to Freedom, and she and her family live in New York. You can catch all her writing on

HEY, GIRLS! We love hearing from you, but feel limited in the ways we can help. For one thing, we’re not trained counselors. If you’re seeking counsel, we encourage you to talk to your pastor or a godly woman in your life as they’ll know more details and can provide you with ongoing accountability and help. Also, the following comments do not necessarily reflect the views of Revive Our Hearts. We reserve the right to remove comments which might be unhelpful, unsuitable, or inappropriate. We may edit or remove your comment if it:

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  • Becca

    Great post today!! One very special thing that a crush had given me for my birthday last October was a guitar pick necklace with my name on one side and my favorite Bible verse on the other (1 Peter 3:3-4). I adore that necklace so much and I love to wear it all the time:) I certainly have looked to guys for acceptance and love and confidence in the past (“past” meaning up until 3-4 months ago=P), but I’ve been realizing and acknowledging the fact that Jesus adores me and loves me with an everlasting love. Thanks so much for this today Paula:)

    • Paula Hendricks

      What a creative gift, Becca! Still, as cool as it is to us, it doesn’t even register on the gifts scale compared to all Christ’s forever-gifts, does it?

      • Becca


  • Kayla

    Thanks Paula for this series. It’s been so helpful. Well, my crush gave me a lot of headaches lol. You are soooooo right God is better then any guy could ever be. I just have had a bit of hard times with guys, and it’s hard to get over that. I know not all guys are like that, but sometimes it seems they are. For now I’m trying to get close to God and I do want to be married someday, it’s just I’m kinda afraid to get close to a guy cause I don’t want hurt. Any advice????

    • Isabella Jo

      I love how we girls can relate so well but our stories are still unique to each of us. The way I see it, if we are truly willing to trust God and follow His will for our lives, He will lead us to the man He made for us. I also want to be married someday, God-willing. If this is the case for you and me, it is so awesome to think that there is a guy out there that isn’t perfect (because no human is) but is perfect for us! God has specifically made a man for us that will suite our personalities and together we will glorify Christ! Until we meet these men, we have to be willing to follow God literally WHEREVER He leads us.
      Don’t be afraid to get close to a guy. But don’t start getting close to just any guy. Only lots of prayer and listening to God will tell you (whether it’s tomorrow or in ten years) which guy to build a relationship. Don’t let that guy have this part of your heart and another guy a different piece of your heart. Save it for when you meet “the man”, so he can have you entire heart!

      Much love!

    • Paula Hendricks

      Dear Kayla,

      I’m sorry you’ve been hurt. I’ve learned the hard way that there are two ways to be hurt:

      1) From not being wise and letting any ‘ole guy have access to our affections (a really bad idea, and an unnecessary source of pain)

      2) From loving a godly guy with God’s love, which is entirely different. 1 Corinthians 13:7 talks about how love “bears all things” and “endures all things.” This shows us that love will be tough at times. Love is anything but flimsy! Other places in the Bible tell us that love “covers a multitude of sins.”

      But when you’re in a relationship with a godly guy, he’s doing the same thing to you–choosing to love you even when you’re not acting very lovely. There’s no way around this kind of pain if you’re going to be in a relationship with another human, but at the same time there’s such grace in it all.

      I hope that helps a bit. Cry out for wisdom. It will protect you from unnecessary pain.



  • jay

    There is absolutely nothing that God cant give you, he could give you everything in the world, but he knows whats best for us, and the reason he does different things for us. God has given me everything i need, and more! he gave me hope, his Son, and the wonderful honor of knowing him, and growing up in a Christian home. he gave me a family, and so many things that i would probably spend years writing what he has done! Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For i know the plans i have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you, and to give you a hope and a future.” God has just blessed us so much. Its doesnt matter if you have a crush or not, you have God and he will never let you down, even if you dont believe it. God loves you. More than you know.
    thank you God! Amen!

    • Paula Hendricks

      Thanks for taking the time to share, Jay!

  • Emmalee

    Hello Paula! WOW! You don’t know how these series are reminding me of the fact that God is everything. To answer the questions, and to be completely honest, my crushes gave me nothing. WELL, one at my church offered me a great deal of encouragements when I was like realy realy down. (So shocked he noticed that). I thought that was so nice of him. But when it comes to God and his unending love, nothing can compare to what He gave to us on the cross.

    • Paula Hendricks

      Amen, Emmalee!

  • jay

    dont worry Kayla, i have had problem and hurts with guys too, you just need to pray, give your situation to the Lord. Trust God no matter what happens. You are going to be hurt in life, but God will still be at your side no matter! God loves you, so dont worry about your crush, be yourself, be who God wants you to be, and if God allows it, you might just get your crush! Just trust God, pour out your problems to him, he knows everything thats happening in your life, and everything thats going on. We just have to believe. He wont let you down. He understands more than anything, or anyone else. he made you! God loves you and he has a plan. Dont give up! i will pray for u!

  • Rebecca Brown

    Well, my crush has given me attention, his affection, his time, and sometimes his money (in the form of buying me things). Christ has given me salvation and my home that I can look forward to in heaven. I think the biggest thing that I think that my crush can give me that God can’t is his strong arms wrapped around me. Although my crush has yet to hold me in his arms, his physical closeness to me sends shivers throughout my body. I know that God is always there for me… but sometimes my feelings get the better of me and all I want to do is be wrapped up in my crush’s arms and attention.

    • Paula Hendricks

      Thanks so much for your honesty, Rebecca. Watch for a blog post soon about this whole topic of God and a pair of strong arms wrapped around you. 🙂

  • Grace M.

    One time I walked into youth group and my crush was eating some fries. Everyone knows that I love burgers and stuff, so he offered to share his fries with me. He also encourages me sometimes. Super cute. =) I think what always gets me is that God isn’t physically there like a guy is. He can’t wrap his arms around me like what Rebecca B. said. Sometimes I just want that, but God is always going to be there for me. He created me, He loves me so much, I mean, He died for me! His love for me is never ended, while a guy’s love can and sometimes will leave.
    Btw Paula, I just finished your book, and I enjoyed and loved it soooo much! It’sexactly what I needed at this time. God really spoke to me through it. So I just wanted to tell you thank you so much! 🙂

    • Paula Hendricks

      Oh, I’m so glad, Grace! Thanks for letting me know. 🙂

      And thanks for your honesty. Watch for a post soon about God and hugs.

  • Emilie Bryant

    My crush’s parents own a coffee shop nearby. I’m a coffee junky. My crush gave me a bag of my favorite coffee for Christmas last year. I was blown away. My crush gave me a small bag of coffee, and I was blown away. Although God gave me life. He gave me clothes, a loving family, amazing friends who go beyond great memories, a home, food, and he gave me coffee, he put my crush in my life, and SOOOO much more. Although my crush can give me a physical appearance, my God can give me more support than any person (especially my crush) and he’s the one with Angel Armies and the strongest, real love ever about.

    • Paula Hendricks

      Thanks for taking the time to share, Emilie!

  • Isabella Jo

    It’s so wonderful to know I am not the only one that longs for a guy to hold me! I have often thought, “I wish God could come done here and give me a big bear hug. Then I would really be in love with Him.”
    What I’ve been doing is focusing on the things that God can’t, or hasn’t, done for me instead of the multitudes of things He has done for me. It’s easy to look at the “faults” (although God has no faults- I’m referring to humans now) in people and focus on those and get all upset about the “if only this” and “if only that”. Instead we have got to get our eyes on the beautiful things (now speaking of God) He has to offer and how that overrules what we merely think He is lacking.
    We go through days of crazy thoughts, when the entire time, deep down, we really know that God is more than enough. Too much for us, we don’t even deserve any of it. He’s got it all! And I want to crave Him and love Him with my whole being, because that’s why I was created in the first place!

    • Paula Hendricks

      Thanks so much for sharing, Isabella Jo! Watch for a blog post soon about God and hugs. 🙂

  • Asia

    Unfortunately I’m 20 and have never been in a relationship. I’m soooo scared of getting close to someone. But I’m grateful for my salvation through Christ and everything he gives me each day.

    • Paula Hendricks

      Dear Asia,

      What specifically are you scared of?

      Praying for you now,


      • Asia

        Thank you for the prayers! I’m not the most confident person so i feel like if i can’t fully love myself how can i love someone else. I’m also such a private person that getting close to a guy scares me.

  • Eliza Grace

    I remembered, just recently, a guy I like would always share a cup of his very own version of ‘green tea’ with me. He would make’s like ‘milk tea’–a natural green tea mixed with creamer and a pinch of sugar. have liked how it taste even the very first time I took a sip of it. He always make

    • Paula Hendricks

      What a thoughtful answer, Eliza Grace!

      Mind if I challenge it just a bit, though?

      James 1:17 tells us that EVERY good gift comes from our good heavenly Father.

      I heard someone share that when they asked God for money, He never sent them a check in the mail, but He always provided work through a phone call from someone. God often gives to us through other people. So, you can ultimately thank Him for the green tea, too. 🙂

      • Eliza Grace

        Thanks, Paula! :’)

  • Emma

    This is so eye-opening, Paula! Thank you for pointing out these valuable truths!
    To be honest, my crush hasn’t given me anything….which, at times, has made me mad at him for not being the thoughtful and sweet guy I think he should be. But these times should have made me realize that even though my crush didn’t give me anything, God gave me EVERYTHING, and I should be looking to HIM, not my crush, for the things I really need and the things that are so much more important in the long run!

    • Paula Hendricks

      Right on, Emma!

  • Amber

    Even tho my crush has never given me anything more than great pictures and lots of fun memories, I know he has that gift giving skill! I could use some prayer about him. After a recent mission trip, during which he asked me to prom, I am really nervous to talk to him. I just can’t. It’s so awkward, because I’m a very talkative person, but around him I just become a mouse. Any ideas? I really want his number but I can’t hardly even talk to him, especially in a group. I feel like everyone is listening to our conversation because everyone knows we like each other. So I would love some encouragement and prayer!! Thanks so much!

    • Paula Hendricks

      Praying for you now, Amber. I’d encourage you not to focus on what he might think of you, or what others might think of you, but on HIM. Ask God to help you enjoy him. Get to know him. Encourage him. Forget about self. Easier said than done, right? 🙂

  • SavedbyGrace

    So there is this guy who actually REALLY likes me:) He’s the one with the crush on me:) Anyway, for Valentines a few months ago, he gave me a real pink sapphire heart bracelet. He’s told my brother he is very interested in having a future with me, and he wants to talk to my dad when he gets his life together (financially, ect.). No one knows really about the bracelet:) And i’m debating on whether I give it back to him or not. I really like him too, but i just don’t know if the right thing to do is just keep it (bc he wanted me to have it) or do i give it back when we’re actually ready to start a relationship? I use to talk to him a lot on the phone, but we’ve agreed to stop so that we could focus on our relationships with Christ, and preparing for a relationship (whether it be with each other or someone else). So the bracelet, what do I do? Do I give it back 3 months later? Or just keep it. He told me that it was more of a friendship bracelet:) which is true:) He tells me he couldn’t have asked for a better best friend:) So we r genuinely best friends first. I just don’t know if it’s right to keep the bracelet or not:) I guess the real question is, is it right to keep the “friendship bracelet” knowing that he is very interested in a serious relationship with me? Pls Help!!!:)

    • That’s a tough one, SavedbyGrace. Keeping this gift a secret from your parents isn’t sitting well with me. I would encourage you to speak with your mom and dad about this gift – even though the giver hasn’t spoken with your dad yet. Let them know your dilemma and get their input. God has given them to you to protect you, guide you and lead you through challenges just like this. Will you talk to them soon? I’m praying for you!

      • SavedbyGrace

        It is a tough question to answer! Hence why i’ve struggled finding an answer for so long:) I’ve actually talked with my grandma about the situation, so I do have a Godly woman in the picture. Here’s a little back-story that will maybe help u understand my reasoning a little bit. I made a mistake a few years back with giving my heart to a non christian guy. My parents strongly warned me against communicating with this young man at all. But bc I was a rebellious, unsaved teenager back then, I gave this guy my heart anyway. I caused myself soo much heartbreak and it took me a year and a half to recover from all the mistakes I made. The difference with me now is that I am a Christian 18 year old, and I have hope for my future! My parents have known what I went through with the last guy. And have been very loving and compassionate with me. If I didn’t have my parents and God, I don’t know how I would have gotten through my heartbreak! They do know I’ve been talking to this young man that gave me the bracelet, but don’t really know that he likes me! I just don’t want them to think that I’m in an actual relationship when right now we’ve settled to be friends ONLY! So hopefully you’ll understand a little bit on where I’m coming from:) I’m really having a hard time deciding on how I will bring this up! I agree with you. And I’ve always kind of known i should bring this up, but i’m afraid my dad and mom will go into freak out mode:) As parents normally do when not included in something:) I promise I’ll at least talk to them. I just don’t know when right now. And i appreciate many prayers as I know this will be difficult for me:)

  • Emily

    The most important thing that my crush has given me is his friendship and his love. We live pretty far from each other and the most we talk is a few times a year, either at our church’s summer camp or at a youth retreat that our churches do together, sometimes we do text each other but we decided that was not the best idea for us. It’s really amazing that we actually still like each other even though we don’t see each other much. I think the most that my crush could give me besides his friendship and love is physical affection (and I am saving my virginity until marriage and my first kiss until my engagement). I can’t see how Jesus can give me physical affection, and since that is my love language, I often look to guys, my crush usually (even though I rarely see him), even just to hold hands or give me a hug when I feel like I need to. I feel so far away from Jesus sometimes because he can’t give me physical reassurance and affection.

  • K.Liziel

    Well im known to love popcorn… at christmas. Pretty cool to show up at church and find a huge container of carmel and zebrastriped popcorn, From him;). I loved loved loved it. I bought him monopoly… though he pronounces it mona polly;) love him. Ill continue to pray about what God thinks of us together.