This Valentine’s Day I will be spending the evening with a bunch of Korean men.
No, I’m not trying international speed dating.
I’m much too tall for the Koreans.
Rather, I will be in my seminary class where I am one of the few females and also one of the few white people. I know a 3-hour lecture might not sound like awesome plans for Valentine’s Day, but I love school so I’m pretty excited. Plus, I’ve got a sleeve of Thin Mints in my book bag, and last week the vending machine accidentally gave me FOUR bags of Famous Amos cookies, two of which I saved for this week. So yeah, this Valentine’s Day is pretty much going to rock.
For a lot of single people, though, Valentine’s Day does not rock.
For many, February 14 is a dreaded day because it only serves to remind them of their loneliness. Though it is fun when you’re young and giving valentines to everyone in your class, sadly it has become a day when many teenage girls feel unwanted and unloved.
So this year I’m being super cheesy and am giving all my female students valentines. Yes, it is a blatant act of favoritism, but it can’t be helped. I don’t know what a 15 year old boy needs to hear on Valentine’s Day, but I know what reminders the girls need to hear. Because although I’m often reminded that I’m much older than my students (yesterday one girl asked me if I’d be alive in 50 years), I do still remember the sting of Valentine’s Day for young, single girls.
Thus, my girls will be receiving a letter complete with heart stickers and some lifesavers. Here’s the Valentine letter they’ll receive:
Do you know how much I love you? I know you often say you do, but do you really? Do you truly believe that I take great delight in you? Because I do. Even when you mess up. Even when you think you’re disappointing me. Even then, I take delight in you. I sing over you! You bring me great joy! (Zephaniah 3:17)
Oh how I desire for you to understand this. To understand that I knit you together in your mother’s womb (Psalm 139:15) and made you look EXACTLY as I wanted you to. I know you don’t always feel beautiful, but can you simply trust me when I say that you are? Can you trust that you are my creation and believe that I, the Creator of the heavens and earth, make no mistakes? You are my workmanship, my masterpiece, and I want you to grasp how much I dearly love you (Ephesians 2:10).
I know how you seek the affections of men and are affirmed by the praises of others. But beloved, shouldn’t my affections mean more?
I understand your desire to be noticed and valued and treasured and loved. I understand this because I made you this way. I made you with these desires so that you might seek after me and find that only I can fulfill these longings. Only MY love is sufficient to give you what you’re looking for, to fill your deepest needs.
Would you let me fill them? Would you let me hold you close to my heart as I so long to do? (Isaiah 40:11)
Child, I have been wooing you, pursuing you, and drawing you to myself since your birth. Since even before your birth. I sent Jesus because of my deep love for YOU. I needed you to see just how much I love you, to see it and believe it. I bought you at a price and I brought you to life for a reason.
You are not here by accident. I placed you in your family with a purpose; I chose the time and place you would be on earth because I knew that you would seek me if you lived here and now, and oh how I want you to seek me! (Acts 17:26-27)
Though I don’t need you, I WANT you. And I want you to want me too. I chose you and I redeemed you. I love you and I long for you to come to me and let me reassure you of my ever-present, everlasting love.
I know you often feel ignored and forgotten, unnoticed and misunderstood. But this is only when you forget that I, God of all creation, have never ignored or forgotten you. My eye has always been on you and I understand you better than you even understand yourself. I look to the depths of your soul; I see every word, deed, and thought and I still love you. More than you can imagine.
I look at you and see my precious child- holy, chosen, redeemed. I see past your failings and insecurities and see only the heart and soul that I created- the beautiful girl made perfectly to do what only you can do, to touch the lives that only you can touch.
I see your tears and I feel your pain. I long for you to come to me when your days are hard and when the hurt is too much. Come to me when you are lonely or sad or when your burden is too heavy and your hurt is too big. Come to me and cast your cares before me. Be honest with me as you rest in my protection and I will make your burden seem light. I will give you rest and peace and love that no man can ever provide (Matt 11:28; Psalm 91:1; 1 Peter 5:7) .
You never need to pretend with me. No pretenses or walls will work to keep me out. I know the depths of your soul. And it breaks my heart when you think I don’t- when you think I’m forgetful of you and when you choose to ignore me. Beloved, it saddens me when you value the fickle love of others more than my unfailing love.
Don’t you know that I won’t ever let you down? Everyone else will disappoint you at times. But me? I will never forget you or ignore you or disappoint you.
Don’t you know that I have summoned you by name? You are precious to me and honored in my sight (Isaiah 43:1,4).
Don’t you see, my beloved? You are mine.
And I am yours.
Happy Valentine’s Day, all! May we all be reminded of His great for us today.