Am I catching you the day after Valentine’s Day in a chocolate fog? Or possibly are you suffering with an aching stomach today over a delicious dinner that you ate way too much of? Or maybe just maybe you have the addiction I do and you are suffering from what I refer to as; “Pastry Passion Overload!” AKA too many cookies and cupcakes!
All of these “overloads“ can cause us to wish we had not overindulged! But there is one Valentine tradition that we can never get enough of, Love Notes!
When someone cares to send you a note reminding you that you are loved, it can never overindulge!
Because there was a man who lived over 1000 years ago and was committed to sharing the love of Jesus Christ we have what we now know today as, Valentine’s Day!
St. Valentine lived as a Christian priest in Italy in the mid 200s A.D.! The facts that I am about to share about him with you are not a myth or legend they are historically accurate and known. While it is true that there are some facts that are questioned, the fact that I am about to share have been historically proven. While it is also true that Valentine’s Day has morphed into something much different then it’s original intent, it does not change the historical facts!
Valentine lived under Roman law. He was arrested for refusing to pray to a pagan god and for sharing Jesus, AKA, evangelizing pagans. He was put in prison and the judge who held him prisoner was Asterius. Asturias soon became fond of Valentine and curious about his beliefs, but it was not until Asterius’s daughter became blind that he got serious. He spoke to Valentine and said, “If your God is who you say he is then pray to him to heal my daughter.“
Valentine did pray to God to heal the daughter of Asterius. God heard Valentine’s prayers and healed the girl. At this occurrence, Asterius believed in Jesus and was baptized along with every member of his household!
Sound familiar? Read Acts 16!
Asterius was so moved by the love that God had shown him and his family that he released Valentine and all the other imprisoned Christians!
Valentine could not stop sharing God‘s great love! He was arrested a second time after continuing to evangelize. Valentine also was marrying Christian couples even though it was illegal under the Roman law! He believed with all of his heart that God wanted them to be able to share in the love that He had created for them!
It was said that Valentine would cut out heart shapes of parchment and give them to the couples he would marry to remind them of their vows and God‘s love for them. Sounds like the first ever Valentine cards to me!
At Valentine’s second arrest he was put under Claudius II. Valentine could not stop sharing the good news of Jesus! Although Claudius II was fond of Valentine, Valentines attempts to convert him were not met with appreciation. Quite the opposite! Claudius II ordered the execution of Valentine!
On February 14th, 269 AD Valentine was beaten, but when that did not kill him he was thrown outside the gates of the city and beheaded. The church set February 14th as a day to remember him.
Valentine’s Day truly has God’s love at its source!
“This is how we know what love is; Jesus Christ lay down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.” I John 3:16
Valentine lived out this verse to its fullest! He would not stop sharing the love of God with all of his “ Brothers and sisters!“ He shared the love of God with anyone and everyone that he came in contact with! Even to the point of it causing his own death.
Like Valentine, let’s take every opportunity, especially on February 14th, when it is so natural and easy to do, to remind others of God’s love!
LOVE CHALLENGE: WEEK 3
Send someone a “Love Note!” Heart-shaped or non-heart shaped, reminding them that God loves them!
LIKE ST. VALENTINE, LET’S SHARE GOD’S LOVE AND GOSPEL WITH OTHERS AND NOT WORRY ABOUT THE COST!
Speak Truth Love