God’s heart is the mold from which all other valentines are made.
HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!
There’s some left for you. There may not have been, except that I had just finished a smaller box before I started on this one.
IRREVERENT VALENTINE SENTIMENT # 1
IRREVERENT VALENTINE SENTIMENT # 2
Lyrics of “Big Hunk of Love” © Imagem U. S. LLC, A. Schroeder International LLC, Regent Music Corporation
IRREVERENT VALENTINE SENTIMENT # 3
IRREVERENT VALENTINE SENTIMENT # 4
IRREVERENT VALENTINE SENTIMENT # 5
IRREVERENT VALENTINE SENTIMENT # 7
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(This three-week, 7-days-a-week word challenge has been fun. Lee over at Birdwatching Adventures Plus tempted me to go another week or two on it, but I think my schedule is pressed enough without committing myself to a longer period. However, I think she’s going to continue at least one more week, so if any of you haven’t tried it, why not join her.)
Want to be mine?
I need a Valentine.
It’s lonely in this cold, hard world.
It’s not pushy.
It just loves — with patience —
And gives both time and space for love
Ah … well …
‘Tis sad indeed:
The one I love’s in love.
But not with me. With someone else.
Palms sweat; mouth’s dry;
Can’t seem to concentrate.
Is this some rare disease? No, wait:
It’s Valentine’s week, so I thought it was time to make another visit to my archives. This time I sifted through all the ordinary stuff and dug around until I found the posts that had something to say about LOVE. I found bunches of them, but I chose 14 of my favorites to share one more time. (The number 14, of course, is in honor of Valentine’s Day being the 14th of the month.) I’ve posted the links to them below. Hope you find some of them to your taste and get a little shot of love to help you celebrate Valentine’s Day:
Now, I will admit that sometimes this thing we call romantic love can get downright sloppy — right? (Refer to picture above). But let’s face it: This old world would be a sad, empty, dark place without it. So here’s to celebrating the “Love Holiday” once more. And in honor of that celebration, I got to thinking about the “Irreverent Valentine Sentinment” posts that I did last year. I couldn’t resist hopping back in time and visiting those sentiments, and after I did, I decided to share the links. Many of you read them last year, but I have quite a few new followers this year, and far be it from me to deny them the opportunity to consider the “other side” of Valentine’s Day sentiments. So here are all 7 of them in order of their original posting. Let me know if any of them sound familiar to some sentiments you’ve had from time to time.
Irreverent Valentine Sentiments
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Oh my word!!! Look at that calendar. Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and here I am without a valentine to call my own.
The truth is that I’d like to fall in love again, but I’m just not sure I want to have to deal with all the responsibility that comes with it. Life is so much more complicated when you’re in love, but then it doesn’t shine quite as brightly when you’re not. I may need to do some soul-searching during this “season of love.”
Well, in the meantime, let me be the first to wish everyone a Happy Valentine’s Day! Here’s a little poem from my archives to get you in the mood.
I turned to Love and said, “I must be free.”
And Love said, “Surely. Take your liberty.”
I asked, “In truth? You set me free to roam?”
Then Love replied, “Just please remember home.”
And so I flew to north, south, east, and west.
And, finally, back to home I came to rest.
Then turned to Love and said, “You were so brave,
To let me try my wings. So much you gave.”
Love smiled and said, “Refusal to set you free
Would mean I loved — not you — but only me.”
I’ve shared this true story previously on my blog. However, since it is, without a doubt, the quintessential love story, I believe it has a right to be repeated as we celebrate this year’s Valentine’s Day. It takes a look at two of the world’s greatest lovers who have much to teach us about loving and communicating that love generously.
First, let me lay just a little foundation from “The Book.” God’s Word says all of the Ten Commandments of Jehovah are fulfilled in living our lives in genuine love. It also says that fear is cast out of our hearts and our lives by love. And, most important of all, it tells us repeatedly that the God we serve is Love. He’s what it’s all about, and He’s the source of all genuine love. But when the Word talks about love, it’s referring to much more than just an emotion. Certainly, the emotion is important – and extremely satisfying. But the love that really makes a difference in this world is love that does something.
Love, according to the original language of the scriptures, is the fulfilling of a duty or a responsibility to another – whether to God or to the people in our lives. It works good toward another person whether it ‘feels’ something or not. The truth is that feelings of love – like feelings of anger, happiness, hurt, etc. – come and go. But the act of loving another person is fueled by that deliberate intent of the will to do them good. Like faith, real love is more of an action verb than a noun.
I’m grateful that in my life I have known a great many people who love in this active way. But every time I ponder the subject of love – and especially around Valentine’s Day, when people are prone to send little ‘love letters’ to each other in the way of commercial Valentine cards – my mind turns to two particular lovers of the past who knew and experienced the power of love to change people’s lives completely.
Poets Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning lived one of the most powerful and life-changing love stories ever experienced by human beings. Much of their poetry, especially Sonnets from the Portuguese, describes that love and the power it had to overcome enormous obstacles, and to vanquish debilitating sorrow and hovering death. While the best remembered and most often quoted lines from all of those sonnets are the words, “How do I love thee? Let me count the ways,” the truth is that some of the most riveting portions are Elizabeth’s descriptions of how that love destroyed death and renewed her life. In Sonnet VII she says this:
“The face of all the world is changed, I think,
Since first I heard the footsteps of thy soul
Move still, oh, still, beside me as they stole
Betwixt me and the dreadful outer bring
Of obvious death, where I, who thought to sink
Was caught up into love and taught the whole
Of life in a new rhythm . . . .”
In truth, it was that love that literally saved Elizabeth’s life and gave both lovers many happy years of marriage and fruitful writing that blessed the world for generations. It also gave them a son, whom they loved dearly.
But something many people do not know is that prior to their marriage, Elizabeth and Robert courted, primarily by letter, for a period of 20 months. During that 20 months, they exchanged a total of 574 love letters. Think of it: 574 love letters! In 20 months, that is an average of more than 28 letters each month. Never running out of ways to say “I love you,” and never growing tired of manifesting that love openly. It’s no wonder I consider them the kind and queen of valentines.
And what about you, dear readers? Have you experienced the joy of seeing love give life to those who need it? My Valentine’s wish for each of you this year is that you will experience that reality –whether for the first time or the hundredth.
And, by the way, does the person you love know without a doubt how you feel about him – or her? This time of year offers a great opportunity to make sure. Grab some inspiration from Elizabeth and Robert and make a little extra effort this week to show your love in generous ways.
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photo courtesy of pdphoto.org