In a matter of days after Christmas passes, the retail industry shifts from Christmas trees to heart-shaped chocolate boxes. Those in love embrace Valentine’s Day as another reason to celebrate, while others nurse broken hearts and mourn seasons of loneliness. This may be the year a man spends his first Valentine’s Day without his wife of over fifty years. It could be the premiere of a mom’s new, separated life and broken family. For someone else, the occasion may signify the inaugural holiday since the diagnosis. Others scroll through life wishing for more. Some clutch tightly to the smiles they are fighting for.
Few get to celebrate a soul-filling love. Christ is all we need to live a full life, yet we seek satisfaction from our earthly relationships. We craft, build, counsel, seek, and pedestal-place our significant others and spouses where they are bound to fall. Where do we turn? How do we heal? Does God care about our broken hearts, tear-stains and cracked promises?
For those in Christ are never alone, even when abandoned by the physical presence of those who promised to stand by us on this earth. Whether death has stripped away our companions, or the human frailty of this fallen world has riffed our relationships, we can seek peace, miracles, healing, and the most satisfying love in the One who is love… God. Christ died to make sure we never have to spend a Valentine’s Day – or any other day for that matter – feeling alone and abandoned in this world.
Coupled, married or single, in the wrong or mostly right, broken-hearted or hopeless…
You have a purpose. You matter. You are loved.
I praise You, God, because You are Love (1 John 4:8). Over and over in Scripture we are reminded of Your grace, compassion, and never-failing ability to keep your promises. To a constantly rebellious lot, You chose to sacrifice Your Son, Jesus. The injustice He suffered to make way for our salvation is the greatest expression of love across time. Psalm 115:3 reminds us,“Our God is in heaven. He does whatever pleases Him.”
So often we get love confused with Love. We look, wish and hope for boxes filled with chocolate and vases overflowing with roses. We wish for our significant others to read our minds and whisk us off our feet in romantic scenes akin to Hallmark Movies. Forgive us, for when our sights fall out of focus we miss Your presence. The never-ending, unchanging presence of the All-Mighty Living God. The Love that is and was and ever shall be. The One who came down from heaven to sweep us off of our feet. Christ, who knew what we longed for before we understood the error of our ways.
“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9
At the end of the day, our hearts, whether broken or blessed by relationships on this earth, long for You. For all of those feeling lonely, unworthy, unloved, and without hope – on Valentines Day or any other day, we pray. We pray life into their worn track of deceitful thoughts, lies begging them to throw in the towel and believe they aren’t good enough to be loved. I pray today, and each day forward, they feel Christ’s love. A love without end. An impossible love. A love that surpasses the grief of a lost spouse, the mourning of a life that will never be the same, or the way back clouded by loss.
“For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.” 1 Peter 1:23
We especially pray, today, for those who have broken and failing marriages. We pray for the breath of the Holy Spirit to breathe life into dead places and dark hearts. For impossible forgiveness and miraculous reconciliation. We pray, Father, that we take note of Your perspective, and apply Love to our everyday lives through Your Word. Thank You for leaving us notes of encouragement strung together like a love song through the Old Testament and the New. Love is on every page. I pray today that You open new eyes to see it, and shed new light for those who have made a lifetime of studying Your inspired Word. Unleash the power of Your truth in our lives, Lord. Redefine Love as we know it. Restore hope to dark places, swap sobs for laughter, and burn through the fog with your light.
“Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments.” Deuteronomy 7:9
For those fortunate enough to know love on this earth, may they never take it for granted, nor hold on to it tighter than their grasp on Your hand. Set our priorities to match Your will, Father.
Our Comforter, enter into dire circumstances today and uplift burdened hearts. Greater than red and pink hearts and confectionary love is a life spent seeking Christ. May our relationships be God-focused and our steps Christ-led. May we never love anyone more than You. Let Your love be our first priority. Reveal Your hidden truths, bless our lives, guide our progress, and allow Your Love to trickle down into every part of our lives. Then, we will truly see what Love looks like: not red hearts and charming dates, but love lived out loud. Marriages that beat the odds and rack up the decades. Lives lived in joint service of Your Kingdom. A life that is filled by Your Love and dependent on Your Presence.
This Valentine’s Day, overturn our view of love… permanently and radically.
In Jesus’ Name,
“Megs” writes about everyday life within the love of Christ. She stepped out of her comfort zone, and her Marketing career, to obey God’s call to stay home and be “Mom” in 2011. From that step of obedience her blog, Sunny&80, was born, a way to retain the funny everyday moments of motherhood. (http://sunnyand80.org) Meg is also a freelance writer and author of “Friends with Everyone.” She loves leading her Monday morning Bible study, being a dance mom, distance running and photography. Meg resides in Northern Ohio with her husband, two daughters, and Golden-Doodle … all avid Cleveland Browns fans.
This article is part of our Prayers resource meant to inspire and encourage your prayer life when you face uncertain times. Visit our most popular prayers if you are wondering how to pray or what to pray. Remember, the Holy Spirit intercedes for us and God knows your heart even if you can't find the words to pray.
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