Valentine's Day is in less than a week and unlike most people, I genuinely love this holiday. I especially love the day after Valentine's Day when all the candy goes on sale, but that's besides the point. I know some people think that Valentine's Day is just a way to commercialize love or that you shouldn't just show your love to your boo on one day or that it's Single Awareness Day, but I have honestly loved this holiday since elementary school.
I remember moving to America in second grade and celebrating Valentine's Day with all of my classmates. Remember when the WHOLE class was your Valentine? Hahaha. Good times right? You would take home a shoe box and decorate it and the next day it would be filled with candy and cards. The whole classroom would be decorated with pink and red hearts and it was just so fun. It was more about celebrating love with your friends than with a significant other.
However, when middle school and high school rolled around, it became more of love towards a significant other. Regardless, I didn't care because I really loved the idea that we have a day to celebrate love. In high school, I was in HOSA where we would sell carnations and deliver it to the person who it was sent to along with a note. I just felt so excited to be able to leave class and help set up the carnations as well as play cupid and deliver carnations to people. I even bought these heart earrings a long time ago that I made a tradition to wear every Valentine's Day. Yeah, I was that girl.
Let's fast forward to right now as a senior in college. Maybe it's because I've always had exams/lab reports the week of Valentine's Day or the day of, but I don't get as hyped for it anymore (regardless of whether or not I have a Valentine). The busyness of being a college student really just jaded my hopeless romantic idea of Valentine's Day. Don't get me wrong, I'm still excited for it, but I started to interpret it in a different way.
I started looking at Valentine's Day in a different light...not in the whole superficial idea of love like in high school or when I was younger. I tend to romanticize the idea of love and celebrating it on a certain holiday that I had to step back and think about what love really was. Sometimes I forget that there is a God who chooses to love me each and every day.
It's not the kind of love that is based on what you can do for Him or what you have to offer. It's an all-consuming love that chooses us regardless of what we have done or not have done. We don't have to work for it or try hard for it. To quote the song Reckless Love by Cory Asbury (please listen to it, it's so amazing), "I couldn’t earn it, I don’t deserve it, still You give Yourself away". We don't deserve God's love, but He still chooses us. He chooses you. He chooses me. Thinking about His love always overwhelms me and most times I tear up just thinking about it. It's hard for me to wrap my head around His love for us. It doesn't change. It's constant. I can push Him away or draw Him closer, but His love for me never goes away. I don't have to worry about Him changing His mind about me.
1 John 4:18 is so reassuring because it says, “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. We love because He first loved us.” He first loved us. Wow. I want to learn how to love God more and to grow in Him daily. I want to love Him more and more each day the way He chooses to love me.
But I also want to learn to love others the way He loves me.
I want to love others on a deeper level. I tell my friends and family I love them all the time whether it's in person or through text. Sometimes they leave me on read and don't respond (probably accidentally or maybe they feel uncomfortable saying it back), but it doesn't matter because I still choose to say it. I don't think they know how much I love them because I may not be the best at showing it, but I am working on it.
I don't want to just love people when they're kind or loving towards me though, I want to love people the way God loves us. We may not always choose to love Him, but he chooses to love us. I want to love people even when it hurts and when things aren't always pretty. I want His heart and His passionate love for others to shine through me. I want to see people the way God sees them. I'm not always going to portray it the best, but as 1 Corinthians 13:8 says, "love never fails", so even though I may fail as a person in showing God's love to others sometimes... I know that His love will never fail.
Whether or not you're spending this Valentine's Day alone, with friends or with your boo, just know that you are so loved by God. You are valuable, precious and deeply loved by the Most High King. Don't ever forget that, and if you do... don't hesitate to shoot me a message. I'll be glad to remind you :)
Happy Early Valentine's Day.
The girl with upside down dimples