This week millions of dollars will be spent on chocolate and it ranks second only to Mother’s Day for flower sales. I love the idea of having a special day set aside to honor those we love, but I wondered how the day came to be in the first place.
St. Valentine’s Day started as a church holiday around 500 years after our Savior’s death. There was more than one St. Valentine and they all suffered the death of martyrs. One of them was said to perform marriages in secret. It wasn’t until much later that the celebration turned into one of romantic love.
During Medieval times, the practice of sending written Valentine messages was established and remains to this day through the boxes for cards which stand in classrooms or the beautifully worded messages given to those we love on that day.
Of course, most women believe that every day should be Valentine’s Day, since at least 85% of them are the ones who purchase those sentimental cards each year. Love has become one of those terms that often gets tossed around like yesterday’s news and soon it is forgotten, only to move on to the next relationship. True love is measured not by gifts of flowers, candy or romantic dinners, but by the willingness to give up everything for the other person.
Let’s remember the source of all love. God instituted love when He created the world and finished it when He gave His most precious gift to all of us and it will continue through eternity. When Jesus became our sin bearer, He gave us the best valentine ever.
“Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13 ESV