Tomorrow we celebrate Valentine’s Day, named after Saint Valentine, a Christian martyr around 300 CE. Versions of his story have Valentine in Rome as a Christian leader who runs into trouble because of his faith. In the story I grew up with, Valentine’s servants are imprisoned, to be killed. Valentine meets the blind jailer’s daughter who carries messages of encouragement written on red hearts to the prisoners. When discovered, Valentine offers to die for his friends and the girl receives her sight. Both are examples of love.
Today, the historical story I read had a Roman official challenging Valentine that if he could make the official’s blind daughter see then the official would become Christian. Valentine prayed and the girl was given sight. Valentine later refused to give up his faith and was martyred. Both stories speak of love, of sharing that love, and of the cost of that love.
Let us take time today and make an acronym of love – for each letter of love, write words that describe love. For example: L: light – love brings light to my days and lightens my load. O: open – love doesn’t keep secrets and I feel more open when I am loved. V: victorious – when I am loved whether I win or lose the race, a friend is with me. E: eager – love is eager to please the other. Pick your own words. Love is a gift and a wonderful blessing to our lives. 1 Corinthians 13, the love chapter of the Bible, talks about love and ending, “And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.” Impeachments condemn and defend, pandemics kill but God’s goal is love. Blessings as you ponder and may you have a wonderful day remembering the gift of people who have loved you.