Ahhhh, Valentine’s Day. This utopian holiday is named after the saint of happy relationships and marriages. It is a celebration of love relationships through the giving and consuming of massive quantities of chocolates, sugar confections with words of love and affirmation on them, greeting cards with declarations of love, flowers (primarily red roses), balloons, and wining and dining to the tune of $4.3 BILLION with a “b” being spent last year. That averages out to around $175-$200 per person participating which the National Retail Federation estimates to be 53% of Americans.
Interestingly, couples in new relationships (6 months or less) spend the most, followed by engaged couples, and at a distant third are couples who have been in longer relationships. I guess the pragmatic wins with the veterans. My valentine and I are over 30 years into our relationship. It tends to make him happier if I choose to NOT spend money on any of those things! 😉
Americans not in a romantic relationship tend to feel “on the outs” during Valentine’s Day. Some even go so far as to call it “single awareness day,” and they dread the 14th of February. The holiday’s focus leans toward romantic love, but it can also be about the love of friends and family. Most importantly, there is the enduring and filling love that God gave us through the best Valentine’s gift of all…Jesus! Single or married, we are all complete when we are in a relationship with Him.
We all love to be loved. When people do something to show how much they love us, it matters all the more because it makes it real. Jesus put His love into action. He demonstrated His love for us, in that while we were still sinners, He died for us. (Romans 5:8)
Our sin creates a debt we cannot pay ourselves. Jesus came to pay that debt. He came down from heaven where His Kingship, power, and authority are celebrated. He became a humble man who lived a perfect life but was not celebrated. He was despised and rejected, then offered Himself as the sacrifice for our sins, so that we could live with Him for eternity.
When God touches your inner spirit with the truth of the depth of His love, you are stirred in a mighty way. Students at Asbury University in Kentucky are experiencing this right now. If you haven’t heard about it, the Spirit of God has begun a revival that started on February 8 and is STILL GOING ON. Students who have experienced this firsthand say things like: “We are soaking in God’s powerful presence and His overwhelming love. We are also chomping at the bit to share this wonderful thing that is devoid of socioeconomic, cultural, age, or gender boundaries. We feel the unconditional love of THE God who paid the price for an eternal relationship with us. It is so saturating, that unless we share it, we will cease to be so filled.” THAT is true love.
I think God’s heart is broken over those whose hearts break on Valentine’s Day. God’s Word to every heart is that we are unconditionally and profoundly loved – not for anything that we have done, but because we are precious to the One who created us. Our salvation cost Jesus everything, but to Him, we are worth it.