Valentine’s Day is a confusing holiday. It doesn’t celebrate a historical event or birthday. It doesn’t
really honor anyone in particular. Not even the Catholic Church can tell you which St. Valentine this day
is all about. In fact Wikipedia (we all know what a reliable source that is...) says that the origins of
Valentine’s Day are “shrouded in mystery.”
Maybe that’s a good thing because love, which is what this Hallmark holiday is allegedly all about, is
pretty mysterious. Well, maybe not mysterious but certainly pretty misunderstood. I would be bold to
say that there is more misinformation out there about love than about any other topic, except maybe
alien abductions. :)
This morning I have been perusing quotes.com to see what the famous and infamous have to say about
love. Here are a few of my favorite quotes.
“Love is blind.”- William Shakespeare Far be it from me to contradict the bard. In fact, recent brain
research says that falling in love does have an effect on the part of the brain that deals with wise
judgment. However, I think looking at Jesus tells a different story. Jesus teaches us that love sees. Jesus saw a rock of faith in a man who crumbled under pressure. He called Simon, "Peter" long before Peter’s faith was unshakeable. Jesus saw Judas, the betrayer, knew all that was in his heart yet, calls him friend. Jesus sees you, I mean really sees you and loves you.
I love the story of the rich young ruler who comes to Jesus to ask what he must do to inherit eternal life.
The gospel of Mark says, “And Jesus looking at him, loved him.” The end of that story is that because
Jesus really saw him and really loved him, Jesus challenged him. Read the story in Mark 10.
Love does not deny the difficult realities of life and relationship. If it did, Paul would not have had to
write his great treatise on love in 1 Corinthians 13. We wouldn’t need to be reminded that “love is
patient, love is kind and is not jealous…it does not seek its own way…” Basically, Paul says love is a
choice to see through the eyes of Jesus.
“Love is like the wind, you can’t see it but you can feel it.”- Nicholas Sparks Can someone explain to me
how this guy is a best-selling author many times over? Now I understand what he is trying to say; the
problem is that it’s just a bit simplistic and frankly really shallow. I see love every day in teachers that go
the extra mile to help students, in parents who sacrifice for the sake of the children they love, in
children who sing at nursing homes, in friends who encourage… (Yes, my school is a pretty great place.)
Love really is not invisible and intangible. Love isn’t even all that abstract. LOVE DOES according to
author Bob Goff.
So let me close with a quote from the website that really captured me: “Being deeply loved by someone
gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”-Lao Tzu So be strong and
courageous. Jesus sees you and really loves you! Happy Valentine’s Day!