You shall love your neighbor as yourself. -Matthew 22:39a
Tomorrow is February 14 - a day of red roses, heart-shaped boxes of chocolates, sentimental greeting cards, and candlelit dinners - even at Waffle House! Love is in the air! While Valentine's Day is celebrated as the expression of romantic love - a wonderful gift from God! - the holiday is actually named for two different Roman saints, both called Valentine and both utterly unconnected to romantic love.
All around the world, Valentine's Day is the day that people show their love for someone special. It is a great occasion to express love and appreciation for any of our loved ones, but it is just as important to show that love the other 364 days of the year. The fresh-cut flowers eventually fade, the candy box is littered with empty brown wrappers, and the "press here" button on the glittery valentine no longer produces an Elvis-like rendition of "Love Me Tender."
But God's love for us will never end. As followers of Jesus Christ, we are commanded to love the Lord our God with all our heart, and with all our soul, and with all our mind ... and to love our neighbor as ourselves. We love because God first loved us.
One simple way to express love is simply to let someone know you are thinking about them. An email, a card, a phone call, a letter, a text, an instant message, or a personal visit - we have so many ways to keep in touch with those whom we care about. Find little ways to show acts of kindness to those you love before and after Valentine's Day this year!
Prayer for Today
Loving God, show us how to love one another as you have first loved us. Guide our thoughts and guard our lips that the world may see the love of Christ in us. Remind us that our actions speak louder than words, and help us slow down and purpose to spend quality time with our friends, families, neighbors, and brothers and sisters in Christ. Amen.