Love is a beautiful thing
I’ve re-written this blog post a number of times, and was actually about to scrap it all together. But I have some thoughts I think are important to share, so you have the great pleasure if reading them (you’re welcome). On a day where many are basking in the euphoria of flowers, cards, gifts and such I hope this doesn’t rain on your parade. With that said, let me proceed.
Love is indeed such a beautiful thing. It’s awesome, in fact only right that as we now dedicate days to things like Pokemon Day, National Ferris Wheel Day (it’s today), we also dedicate one to love and the celebration of it. So I hope that in the midst of all the preceding hype (if I see one more pop up Valentine flower stand I’ll scream), you are indeed enjoying celebrating love with yourself and your loved ones today.
I remember many many moons ago, getting so excited about picking someone to be my valentine, then sending them a card or gift, hoping for one in return, then swooning, crying, or being disgusted depending on the outcome. Ah, young love.
Many moons later to date (maybe it’s an age or life happens thing), I’ve grown less and less moved by the surface show of it all. Don’t get me wrong, I am still and will always be a young girl at heart so I love flowers and gifts and things. By all means, don’t hold them back. If it’s in your heart to give them to me, I will take. But I’m more moved by gestures that show application of the rules in Matthew 22:34-40. Love God, with all your heart. Love your neighbour as yourself. Not everyone will agree with this, but I believe one’s actions show whether they love God or not. You can’t be intentionally mean, a jerk, a bitch, a bully, selfish and the rest, if you truly love God (or for those who don’t believe in God, a higher being). Also, it will not matter what day it is, you will strive to be consistent in your love actions before and after Valentine.
I kept forgetting the second part
Love your neighbour was always something I was good at. It came natural to me. Think of others, give to others, make them feel as comfortable, recognised and valued as you can. Boxes all ticked. But the problem was with the second part, “as yourself”. I must have fallen asleep in Sunday School class many moons ago. The two must work hand in hand. For if you do all the aforementioned, but do it to the detriment of yourself because you forgot to love yourself too, then you gradually place yourself in the precarious position of being drained. This is the case especially if those you’re pouring out into don’t go by the 2 rules and reciprocate. I have learnt my lessons, and hence now made these rules my foundation. It makes for a happier, more content and balanced life.
Make Valentine count
People seem to enjoy “5 steps to….”, or “10 tips for….” everything these days, so here are my tips to help make this day count.
- Give thanks to the one who created love for us to enjoy. 1 John 4:19. It all started with Him.
- Love on yourself today. You being worthy of being loved and celebrated has nothing to do with whether or not you have a “Valentine” to celebrate it with. If you haven’t got one, be your own Valentine. Make sure you do something no matter how small to love on and celebrate yourself today. You are worth it.
- Celebrate your loved ones today. A call, a card, a text, a gift, a gesture. Your heart (and purse) will guide how you do this, but it’s a day of love so let the loving flow. It’s the thought that counts so let your loved ones see some evidence of this.
- Let the kids get in on the act. Teaching your kids the real meaning of Valentine and helping them celebrate it in a way that makes sense to them is a beautiful thing. So if they’re making cards or gifts encourage and support their creativity. Help them feel comfortable enough to discuss their feelings so you can correct and guide as necessary. For the older kids be in the know on what they are doing and planning for Valentine. If it means checking their phone, social media pages, having honest conversation with them to catch any inappropriate behaviour, I say do it. These days we need to be on our toes about these things.
- It’s a two way thing. Sisters we especially have to take note. Valentine doesn’t mean he has to do all the giving, you can give too. A kiss (if you haven’t kissed him in a while), a specially cooked meal, a gift of something you know he really likes or needs….. something. Sometimes we morph into gold diggers on Valentine’s Day and that’s not cute.
- Let your love be consistent. If you love someone it will show, and not just today only. Flowers today and no flowers for the rest of the year just because… is suspicious, window dressing behaviour, especially if you know she loves flowers. Don’t treat her like a queen today then ignore, be inconsiderate or treat her less than she deserves majority of the rest of the year. Soooo not cool.
- Let your gift mean something to the recipient, to show you really value and appreciate them. This one is especially for the mummies and daddies. For example she might value a day off, breakfast in bed, dinner cooked for the family or you sorting out the kids this evening, more than new shoes if the cupboard is already filled with shoes. For real! Material things alone do not make up for her daily sacrifice as a wife and mother. Try TLC with extra emphasis on the T.
- Don’t get caught up in the hype. We all know how things go when we get caught up in the moment. If it’s not catching the Holy Ghost many will agree in hindsight that they probably should have applied more wisdom and brain cell thinking. For example, fellas if you’re not sure she’s the one for you and you’re proposing because you think “she’s expecting it and it’s Valentine’s Day so why not”, just go for not. Sisters if you’re not sure if you want to take things further but he’s given you all these great gifts and it’s Valentine……. Please pause, gba break, sleep on it first. Don’t let the euphoria of a milestone being done on Valentine’s Day move you to make a decision you will regret years later.
I think that sums up the crux of what was on my heart. Hope it helps, hope I didn’t kill your Valentine vibes and I hope it gives rise to you pausing and reflecting. It’s a beautiful day, may your celebrations be all you wish for and more. Happy Valentine’s Day to you, to me, to all of us.
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