February 15th Love

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“I have loved you with an everlasting love…”  Jeremiah 31:3

Valentine’s Day, as celebrated in many Western countries, is supposed to be a day filled with gifts (usually candy and flowers), lovingly worded greeting cards, and special acts of kindness. Yet for many people—young and old—it is a day marked by an aching heart. The single mother weighed down by burdens of responsibilities almost too heavy to bear. A widowed man sitting quietly in his rocker with only tears of memory as his companion. The young single woman wonders why she alone, among so many of her friends, is without a fiance or husband. The married couple who merely co-exist without a spark of passion. The candy is consumed, the flowers fade and many of the special acts are unfortunately replaced with less loving gestures.

What happens on February 15th? Is there a love that helps us bear our burdens, wipes our tears, satisfies our longings? Madeleine L ’Engle writes:

One of our children when he was two or three years old used to rush at me when he had been naughty, and beat against me, and what he wanted by this monstrous behavior was an affirmation of love. And I would put my arms around him and hold him very tight until the dragon was gone and the loving small boy had returned. So God does with me. I strike out at Him in pain and fear and He holds me under the shadow of His wings. Sometimes He appears to me to be so unreasonable that I think I cannot live with Him, but I know that I cannot live without Him.”

Thank you, Father, that your love doesn’t depend on my worth or my reactions, that you loved me from before the beginning of time, that your love can fill all the empty spaces of my heart.

By Marilyn Ehle
Used by Permission

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