For those of you that are not around me very much, you may not realize that I’m a very practical and simple person. My family and friends can contest to this when it comes to my gift giving or my wish list request around Christmas, and it extends to other holidays or events where gift giving is expected.
The Lord knew what he was doing when he matched me up with the most practical man on the planet. When it comes to Valentine’s Day, he isn’t the guy to spend four times the amount on flowers or spend $20 on a box of four pieces of miscellaneous chocolate. He would never book a dinner at a restaurant that is overcrowded and has a “special menu” for the evening that might choose to double the price just because it is Valentine’s day. We both say, thanks, but no thanks to celebrating it that way.
I hope you will not begin to think of us as the Scrooges of Valentine’s Day. Please, don’t get me wrong! I don’t mean to knock it because I know so many love this day and all its attempts to make another feel loved. You embrace this day with all of its frivolous and extravagant ways to tell others you love them. Of course, you believe you should show your love to others every day, but there is something so sweet about a day set apart just to celebrate love.
Regardless of which camp we are in on Valentine’s Day, I think we can find a healthy place for this day. After all, when Jesus was asked what is the greatest commandment of all He addressed this topic of “love”. He shared in Matthew 22:37-39, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
Our God is all about love, all about it! It’s the greatest commandment He had for us – love Him and love others. Pretty simple, or at least our approach to it can be. We don’t have to participate in all that is expected of us this Valentine’s. However, we can try our hardest to love God and love others well during this season. The world has already defined how we can best love on this day. Let’s redefine our approach and love with a greater intentionality and genuine heart.
Here are some suggestions of how you can show love to others on Valentine’s Day (or on the other 364 days of the year). 1) Study the topic of Love during the month of February. The Bible is full of verses addressing the topic. 2) Put together Valentine Bags for the Homeless. 3) Consider doing something for those who might be alone on Valentine’s Day: A widow or widower, recently divorced woman, a single girl from your neighborhood, church or work or elderly people in a nursing home. 4) Send love letters/Valentines to friends and family. 4) Leave random love notes to the special people in your loves. 5) Make positive affirmation note mailboxes for your workplace, classroom or home. The wonderful thing about showing love these ways, it can be done all the other days of the calendar besides February 14.
Now if you are one that enjoys doing all the flowers, candy and out to dinner on Valentine’s Day, you better get busy placing your orders and making reservations because you only have a little over two weeks before this holiday arrives.
With the LOVE of Christ in my heart,
Be Guinn, Youth Director and Lay Servant