By Dorette Saunders
Today is Valentine’s Day. It’s almost midway in the U.S. tax filing season, and a week before the start of Lent. Strangely enough, but those little reminders seem to pose a number of questions. Our answers may require check marks in a real or figurative box.
She loves me? He loves me not? Am I married filing single? Am I divorced but head of household? What do I give up for Lent? What do I do after Lent is over?
All these questions, and others like them, can make us feel fragmented, as if our lives are compartmentalized. But don’t let them. If there is one box God wants you to check, it’s this one. And, surprise…! He’s already checked it off for you. Which one is it? It’s a box with the word “LOVED!” checked off in bright red.
Whether today finds you reminiscing former intimate times, or basking in the light of a forever love, or bitter because your life or love didn’t turn out the way you planned it, or sad because there’s a gaping hole in your dreams, take a long look at the box God checked off…LOVED!
You are loved! Let the words marinate in your mind. God loves you like crazy. Of the billions of people in the world, he chose to love you. God knows that his love builds a bridge to all that you seek. And love starts with God. God is love. No one has ever loved you like this, and no one ever will. Not today. Not ever.
Think about it. God says you are the apple of his eye (Zechariah 2:8). Like a young man in love, God has written your name on the palm of his hand (Isaiah 49:16). He takes delight in you and sings over you (Zephaniah 3:17). God further demonstrated his great love for you by sending his only Son, Jesus, to die for your sins (Romans 5:8). There is no greater love! And nothing can separate you from the love of God which is found in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:38-39).
So seize the day! Share God’s love with those around you. God’s love is the bridge that will carry you safely across to accomplish all that God wants you to do.
Banish anger. Deflect regret. Forgive what seems unforgiveable (this includes forgiving yourself!) Serve cheerfully. Love with abandon. Cross the bridge to all the things you hope and dream about. God’s love is the span. It can carry more than the weight of the burdens that you need to cast off.
God’s love builds a bridge…and in his faithfulness, he tenderly carries each one of us across it. Look once more at the box God has checked off and say these words out loud, “I am loved! Yes, I am loved by God!”
PRAYER: Ever-loving God, I am forever amazed that you chose to love me. Thank you that your amazing grace reaches even me. Help me, as I luxuriate in this overflow of undeserved love, to share the love I have received from you with those around me. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.