Do you remember being a kid in school and working hard to get all your Valentine’s done for every last person in your class? Some schools didn’t enforce a policy that you needed to bring one for every fellow student. Then you might have been left wondering who would get the most tiny paper drugstore hearts or cards featuring the latest hero from Saturday morning cartoons. Truly a test of coolness! Other places dictated that you had to give each classmate a Valentine or don’t even try to show up with your brown bag of favoritism and pain. That meant on this one day a year you did something nice for the loner, the kid you readily picked on, the classmate you barely knew, as well as your friends. That was pretty weird at the time. On February 13, I did not like you. On February 14, I asked you, “Will you be mine?” Come February 15, you were back on my “do not like” list.
I bet most schools today follow the rule of everybody or nobody. Critics will object and say this is just further evidence of how we are creating a generation of wimps. Others will say it just not fair otherwise and people get hurt.
The truth is it isn’t fair and either is life. However, on this single day of the year the school or the teacher has made a rule that will demand it is fair. Just on this one day.
If Jesus were to give out Valentine’s, I am pretty sure He would give one to everybody without be told any rule. So for one day a year the school mandates that everyone will act like Jesus! On this day, we will at least pretend that we all like each other, just maybe with the hope that through this action we can get a little closer to a just and fair community.
Personally, my kids are old enough that I no longer have to run to CVS to buy tiny cards for top dollar. I look back on those days and wonder if all those Valentine’s Days made the children more loving, more compassionate, and more Christ-like. Did they simply act more like Jesus on this one day and then fall back into the ways of the school yard jungle? I am not sure. What I do know is that it makes me even more grateful that there is a Jesus who is alive and giving love and affirmation each and every day of the year. When I was a child, for a day maybe there were those who pretended to like me because of some imposed rule. Thankfully on February 15, I still had Jesus.
Happy Valentine’s Day from Jesus! On this day everyone is loved!