Why (and How) We Celebrate Valentine’s Day
A “Hallmark” holiday, a marketing gimmick, an arbitrary day for people to suddenly express their love for one another with chocolate and roses, and just another way to blow through a lot of money…. that’s Valentine’s Day, right? Yes, it’s sappy and silly and redundant and commercial, and I don’t even really care for red roses OR big boxes of overpriced chocolates. (Just give me wildflowers and Reese’s any day!)
But at the root of it, this is a day, however contrived, to celebrate love. And we who know about the Greatest Love can be its greatest lovers!
There are many people right around us who feel particularly sad on Valentine’s Day — single people who feel unloved, widows who miss their true loves, people who live alone, even married people who find their marriages empty and lonely — and this day provides the perfect opportunity to reach out to them. Besides the fact that this holiday can bring up so many difficult emotions, it also happens to occur at one of the grayest, gloomiest times of the year — the middle of February! All the more reason for us to add some lovely brightness to someone’s day.
My husband knows I love him, and I don’t need him to spend money on me on this day to remind me that he loves me (although a gift card for a pedicure sure doesn’t hurt!). My kids surely feel loved (the gifts from Christmas and Epiphany haven’t even broken yet), so our Valentine celebration within our family unit is pretty small. I also have very little interest in the “classroom” valentines, in which each child must proclaim that every single other child is truly the most special. (#wasteo’money)
But we do, as a family, try to find ways to show love to others who may need it on this particular day. Some ideas are:
- Making homemade valentine crafts to send to relatives who might be lonely or sad
- Taking special homemade goodies to elderly neighbors
- Sending cards to some of our single friends
- Doing any of the above anonymously, or from “Saint Valentine.”
We don’t have to buy into the marketing messages and spend a lot of money, and we also don’t have to focus on just the handful of loved ones right around us. This can be a day in which God’s love is proclaimed and we remind each other that in contrast with the shortcomings and temporary nature of human love, His love is perfect.
If we all used this day to reach out to those who need it, Valentine’s Day could very bright and rosy indeed!
1 Colossians 3:14
2 1 Corinthians 13:13
Amy is a thankful daughter of the King, finding joy in seeing redemption on a daily basis. Happily married to her best friend from college, Peter, she is the mother of 4 children, ages 3 through 11. Currently, the family is residing in Eastern Europe (the small country of Moldova) for six months, while Peter is teaching at a university there. They are thankful to be a homeschooling family that could easily pick up and move for this valuable cross-cultural experience! Amy writes on her blog, franklyjournaling.blogspot.com, as a way to record her family’s milestones and experiences, and also to express the thoughts and emotions that come along the way in the colorful journey of motherhood.
NOTE: The featured image photo is from www.freedigitalphotos.net.