Funny thing happened this morning. I was making my family’s lunches. That in and of itself is pretty ordinary (my girls won’t eat at the school very often—can’t say I blame them when I see the delectable stuff the cafeteria serves). Anyway, I made their lunches pretty much the same way I always do: Brian gets a sandwich and chips and fruit—have to put ice packs in his to keep it cold. Hope gets a peanut butter only sandwich (my kids have a strange aversion to jelly, although they like everything else that is sweet and sugary), with crusts cut off, cut diagonally, chips, fruit, string cheese and Little Debbie Oatmeal Crème Pie. Caroline’s is the easiest—she gets a lunchable, juice box and a peeled baby orange.
So other than the fact that I pack a totally different lunch for each member of my family, doesn’t sound odd does it? In comparison with most days, it isn’t. BUT, as I was making it, I kept thinking about yesterday. Yesterday was Valentine’s Day. Yesterday, I did lots of extra things to make their lunches extra-special for Valentines. I used a heart-shaped cookie cutter to make their sandwiches pretty. I surprised them with some heart-shaped cookies I made after they went to bed the night before. I even cut their napkin in the shape of a heart.
This morning, I loaded up their lunchboxes—without the heart stuff.
For me, it’s so easy to do something once, maybe even twice, but to be consistent is more of a challenge. Jesus called us to love well—not just on Valentine’s Day, but every day. On Valentine’s, it seems easier—maybe because the entire world gets into it, too. It’s in the day-to-day loving that I have to rely on Him to love through me.
I was reminded of a great passage in 1st John this morning:
“My beloved friends, let us continue to love each other since love comes from God. Everyone who loves is born of God and experiences a relationship with God. The person who refuses to love doesn't know the first thing about God, because God is love—so you can't know him if you don't love. This is how God showed his love for us: God sent his only Son into the world so we might live through him. This is the kind of love we are talking about—not that we once upon a time loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to clear away our sins and the damage they've done to our relationship with God.
My dear, dear friends, if God loved us like this, we certainly ought to love each other. No one has seen God, ever. But if we love one another, God dwells deeply within us, and his love becomes complete in us—perfect love!”
1 John 4:7-12 (the Message)
Happy Day After Valentine’s Day! Love well, my friends!