|Valentine’s Day! A day where people across the globe exchange candy, flowers, cards and gifts with people they love (well, except in grade school, where you are supposed to give everyone in your class a valentine). I remember in my third-grade year, the teacher rearranged the seating chart so that every boy had to sit by a girl for Valentine’s Day. That was terrifying for me. My 3rd grade teacher was actually one of my favorite teachers of all time, but I thought that was a crazy idea. I actually got sick that day and missed my 3rd grade Valentine’s party.
Contrary to popular belief, this holiday was not created by Hallmark Cards. It actually dates back to the 3rd century A.D. and commemorates at least two Catholic priests (Valentine of Rome and Valentine of Terni) who were martyred for their faith. The connection with romantic love seems to have started sometime during the 15th century. In current times, of course, it is a major economic event. In the U.S. alone, nearly 190 million cards are sent annually, and over 18 billion dollars were spent in 2017. Not saying that celebrating Valentine’s Day is bad or wrong, just incomplete. Many put their focus on a one-day celebration and forget that the call to love is an ongoing commitment, 365 days a year. That is the God-style of love that the world is looking for and desperately needs.
1 John 4:7-11 states, “Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love. God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other.”
Today, let us not forget how much God loves us, and how much He desires for us to love one another.
You are loved!