So, this week we celebrate Valentine’s Day. Maybe I’m just an old fuddy-duddy, but I’ve just always seen Valentine’s Day as a Hallmark holiday…celebrated to help card and candy makers make more money between Christmas and Easter. Fortunately, my wife Kathy feels the same way, so we’ve never been ones to make February 14th any more special than any other day. (yes guys, she’s an AWESOME wife!)
I thought about this the other day, as we were doing a youth group study of the different Greek words for love (storge, phileo, eros and agape). As we’ve all probably learned, agape love is the unconditional love with which God loves us. It’s the love that He commands us to love one another with in John 13:34 when Jesus says, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.” Notice he doesn’t say here, “you are also to find one another physically attractive” (eros love), as is depicted on Valentine’s Day with little baby angels flying around shooting people with arrows. And he does just say, “love one another on one special day every year.” No, he says “love one another” unconditionally – period. And love one another with the kind of love Paul spells out in 1 Corinthians 13…the love that endures all things and never ends.
So as we go into Valentine’s Day – sure, enjoy the chocolates, and the little candy hearts with cute little sayings on them; but let’s strive to love one another with the kind of love that says, “I don’t care what you’ve done, or what church you go to (or don’t go to), or what political affiliation you are, or what you look like…I love you unconditionally, because that’s how Christ loves me.” Just think how different our world would look if we strived to love like that. And not just one day a year, but all the time. To borrow a phrase from Mercy Me…I can only imagine.