Valentine’s Day in the United States, is a tradition celebrated enthusiastically by many, ignored or forgotten at great peril by some. Schoolchildren make colorful boxes in preparation. They deliver silly cards and candy to each other. A young boy wonders if that little girl sitting behind him, picked out the little heart messages especially for him.
On this day, girlfriends measure romantic aptitudes of boyfriends. Wives evaluate husbands, looking for a spark that may endure from earlier flames. Many people, not yet connected with significant others, find that Valentine's Day serves only as an annoyance, taunting and reminding them of unfinished business. Many of them will one day find a partner, and for them, in the blink of an eye Valentine’s Day will be transformed.
Perhaps this day might hold meaning for all of us, collectively, as it did when we were children, not yet celebrating or bemoaning the love of one special person. Political jousting between liberals and conservatives has been intense these past two decades. Love has been lost between countries, cultures, and religions.
Anyone who has attended a Christian wedding has heard the words of Paul, taken from a letter to the Corinthians. Whatever your faith may be, these words are eloquent and worth an occasional review. Here is the 13th chapter of First Corinthians:
1: If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2: If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3: If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.
4: Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5: It is not rude, it is not selfseeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6: Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7: It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8: Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9: For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10: but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. 11: When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. 12: Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
13: And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
Some of us agree with each other on issues that are forefront in the world. Some of us will mostly disagree on those same issues. The point I hope to make, is that in everything we do, if we do it in love, a greater likelihood exists that the outcome will benefit everyone. That is a difficult concept, considering many of the passionate issues that confront us.
I wish you all a happy Valentine’s Day. And a special wish of happiness I send to my Valentine, my very lovely wife.
Copyright ©2005, Phil Harris – All Rights Reserved