Valentine’s Day

“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 (NLT)

My birthday parties when I was young all had a Valentine’s theme. Since my birthday is only three days before Valentine’s this always made sense to me. Therefore I now get super excited when, the day after Christmas, I see Valentine’s coming out. I love the spring flowers, the heart shapes, the classroom valentines, all of it makes me smile.

Since I became an adult, however, Dale and I either celebrate one or the other, not both. I usually want to celebrate my birthday because I know the flowers that he would get me on my birthday are cheaper than the ones available afterwards. It bothers me that the cost of everything goes up for one day. Today as I went to the store, I saw men of all ages carrying bouquets of flowers. As I placed my purchases in the car I watched as an older man parked behind me filled out cards and put them in the bouquets he had bought. I smiled at the sweet gesture.

Tomorrow I will spend the bulk of the day in the kitchen. I am planning a nice dinner for the two of us. I am looking forward to making a nice meal as a gesture of my love for Dale. Of course it won’t be much different from other evenings where I cook, and honestly, every time I cook it’s an act of love for him.

When I think of this day, many memories flood my mind. They are sweet memories and I smile as I reminisce.

There is one valentine I cherish. I didn’t receive it on February 14th, it came on April 18th. That day I received the greatest gift ever given to mankind. I received the gift of salvation.

God gave His only son to die for me. Jesus thought of me on the cross. As a parent, (especially the past few weeks), I agonize when my daughters are going through difficult times. Neither of them has come to the point of giving their life for others. The Father in heaven watched as Jesus died for us. He watched as Jesus took on the sin of all mankind. This is the ultimate act of love. It is the greatest Valentine gift ever given.