February, the month of love. February 14th, Valentine’s day. A day filled with potential joy and heartbreak. A day anticipated by some and dreaded by many. The one day of the year when you are expected to receive and give affirmation of love. Wow. That’s a lot of pressure on one day.
I recently heard someone say that it’s a new era, and we can celebrate Valentine’s Day however we want, even if it’s just through self-love.
While this may sound like a good idea, the problem with the above way of thinking, is that once again, that kind of love puts us at its center. This causes issues because God never created us, or any other person, to be at the center of our love. He alone is to hold that place.
1 John 4:19 tells us that “We love because He first loved us.” To experience and then extend true love, we must first receive God’s love. It is in understanding the sacrificial nature of God’s love for us, that we become free to live the selfless nature of God’s love through us. This is what we were created for. This allows the question “Do you love me?” to be transformed into the truth “I am loved.”
There is nothing wrong with hearing from those around us and those we care for that they love us. It becomes unhealthy however, if their “I love you” is the source of my identity and value.
The evidence of our being loved and our value was determined on the cross over two thousand years ago. Are we feeling unloved because there are no red roses being delivered to our door? No chocolates, cards, boyfriend or girlfriend to celebrate with? Then let us remember the cross and what happened there. Jesus gave His life blood instead of flowers. Our value was put on display for all creation to see as the Son of God hung dying on Calvary’s tree. With every drop of blood that fell, God declared, “I love you! I love you! I love you!” Not for a moment, an hour, or a day, but for always and forever.
We were designed for love – God’s love. An unconditional, steadfast, never ending love. We were built to receive it but even more amazing, we were created by God so that His love could flow through us to the people around us. That’s why we are here.
“And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His love.”
Romans 5:5 (NLT)
If we get candy, nice. A card, wonderful. But if we don’t, let’s not let an absent box of bonbons limit who we are and how we love. Receive the love of your heavenly Father. Read His love letters to you in His Word. Let the truth of what He has said and done wash away all insecurity and doubt. As born again believers, we have been restored to God’s original design – His image.
“So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”
Genesis 1:27 (NKJV)
We were not created to need love but to be love. Be filled with His Spirit and declare the Truth with Him – “I am loved! and I was created to love!” and then, let’s go and show the world what Jesus looks like.