Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day - In a true spirit of love

I want to take a moment to say Happy Valentines -which is ironic because I really do not believe in this holiday.  However I had a realization today that almost dropped me to my knees. 

Here's the thing - I think Valentines Day started out in true earnest a day to show your loved one how much you appreciated them.  However in true western culture we've managed to make this all about the gifts we get and not about the fact that we are lucky if we have someone sitting beside us who loves us and well to be honest puts up with us!

So you ask - what was the realization?  I was sitting in church today listening to people say Happy Valentines Day thinking yea yea yea I don't even believe in this holiday.  I haven't since I was a little girl and watched my father tear my mother's heart out 364 days of the year but then bring her flowers and candy on Valentines day and say I love you!  What a joke - however that is not the story for today.  So while we sang I was looking at the wood cross on the side of the stage and in truth my heart just wasn't in it.  I love Mark and Dev with all my heart but felt like this was just such a false day for me to be participating in.  So I looked at the cross and all the sudden I saw Christ hanging from the cross and I imagined how he looked - really looked - bloody and bruised and cut.  Dying for me.  ME of all people - now if that wasn't the best Valentine's Day gift then there has never been one. 

See here's the thing if someone banged down my door right now and dragged me through the streets while my neighbors hurled insults at me and then put me in front of all those people and said would you die a horrible death right now to show your love for your husband and son I would say yes - in a heart beat.  Then if they said would you die for your other family and your close friends - I'll be honest I'd have to think about it - probably would hesitate a lot and finally say yes (I hope).  Then if they asked me if I would die for complete strangers, the same strangers who were just hurdling objects my way as I was hopelessly dragged through the streets - I wouldn't even hesitate - I would say no. 

I hate to admit it but that would be my answer.  Why should I die for those who hurt me - who don't care one once for me - who screw up their lives and then expect others to fix it - those who care more about things than people - Why????  However isn't that what Christ did for us - He died for us screwed up people without hesitation without a doubt.  He died for us - and if that's not love then I do not know what is. 

So today I give my Valentine's to Christ.  He provided me with a happy family, love like I have never known and things I didn't even know I wanted/needed.  However the greatest thing He gave me was love and saved me regardless of how often I trash His love, how often I turn my back, how often I turn to the world instead of Him.

This realization made me cry during communion - made me realize that no matter how I feel about Valentine's Day - I was given the greatest love of all....even though I didn't deserve it.

So I wish you all a great Valentine's day in this spirit not in the cultured spirit.