Making Valentine's Day Extra Special
Discover ways to bring more true love to your family! Make "Be My Valentine" a time to better understand God's
great love for all mankind. The real message in the Bible is to love God with all our heart!
Love is a major theme in the Bible. And, it needs to be a major theme in family life. So often we get sidetracked with the battles, the persecution, or the sadness in the Bible that we forget the real messages. From the Old Testament, we are counseled to love God with our whole heart, soul and mind. And from the New Testament, we read that God so loved us that he sent his only son to show us the way.
Certainly parents love their children, but many forget to put that love into words and actions. If you haven't told your child that you love him during the entire day, certainly do so at bedtime. And don't forget, even in disciplinary times when you must correct a child or say "no" to her request, there should be love expressed: "I love you too much to let you do that."
February, is of course, the time when many people give special emphasis to love. Don't let it become a commercial event with just store-bought sentiments. Here are some ways to bring real love into your family:
- Read Paul's description of love from I Corinthians 13. Using another translation along with the King James version, discuss the many aspects of love.
- Give youngsters the time and materials to make their own valentines. Encourage a short love note in each.
- Let children plan something special for all the family to do that shows love for another person - someone who needs extra love right now.
- Talk about God's love for each family member and how He is always revealing new ideas to each of us. As a symbol of this newness, give each family member a small pot and some easy-to-grow seeds. Keep the potted seeds on a sunny window sill, water as needed, and watch them grow.
- Read together the story of the good Samaritan. Then help your children to understand what a neighbor really is. Is there a neighbor of yours who would enjoy a visit, a plate of home-made cookies, or some garden help? If so, make this a family project.
- Look up Valentine's Day in an encyclopedia and learn about the English writer Geoffrey Chaucer who started the tradition of sending love messages.
- The two commandments described by Jesus can be easily memorized. Help youngsters do this by referring to Deuteronomy 6: 4-9, [thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.] which Jesus later says is "the greatest of the commandments," and John 13:34-35 where Jesus gives the second greatest commandment: "to love your neighbor as yourself." Talk about how it is important to love yourself, too.
- Consider some world figure (one considered good or evil) and pray for that person each night, knowing that he or she can reflect God's wisdom and love for peace.
- Make a "Love Poster" using a piece of cardboard. Mount on it photos of family and friends and under each picture write one reason to love that person.
- Encourage love messages from children to others -- a phone call, a short note, a cassette message. These informal conversations come from the heart and express real love.
- Each day at breakfast or dinner, share ideas on how we show that we truly love God. Explain how we can honor God, follow His words of wisdom, share love with others, and learn more about God's love by attending Sunday School and church services.
This February, make "Be My Valentine" a time to truly understand God's great love for all mankind.