by Linda Veath
Valentine’s Day. February 14. A day set aside to tell others we love them. Gifts are given. Flowers. Chocolate. Jewelry. Expensive dinners.The more lavish the gift, the better.
This year another special day falls on February 14. Ash Wednesday—the beginning of the season of Lent. A time of giving things up. A time of fasting and prayer. A time of somber contemplation. All done in joyful expectation of God’s gift to us — His Son Jesus.
Two very different celebrations intersecting on the 14th of February. Who would want to focus on giving things up when they could receive flowers, chocolate, jewelry, and more? But the celebrations don’t have to be in competition with each other. We can tell others how much God loves each of us and how it is His love that we are showing when we give presents on Valentine’s Day. It is His love filling our hearts with Jesus, the sacrifice for our sins.
My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. ~ John 15:12-13 NIV