Valentine’s Day has never been one of those holidays that is on my “must-celebrate” list. I guess too many times in junior high and high school I sat on the sidelines watching everyone else get the balloons, candy, and gifts. Boy, I don’t miss that phase of life at all!
Of course, when I was dating, Valentine’s Day was something of a high-pressure holiday. I always felt obligated to buy flowers or gifts for the one I liked (yes, liked not loved because I didn’t love easily). In fact, I always sort of felt that those guys were smartest who broke up with their girlfriends right before Christmas — and got back together right after Valentine’s Day. . . definitely seems like the right thing to do budget-wise.
Now married with children, Valentine’s Day is still not the highest priority. Both my wife and I have a low threshold of tolerance for the super-sappy stuff that makes the holiday what it is. But we do celebrate our love, just in different ways and times.
So many people seem to acknowledge their partners only on those days when the expectations are high — namely, Valetine’s Day, Christmas, birthdays, and anniversaries. How much more meaningful it is to celebrate throughout the year.
I’ve heard the joke about the guy whose wife asked him if he still loved her. He replied, “I told you ‘I do’ on our wedding day, and I’ll let you know if I change my mind.” What an incredible softy!
Relationships are like plants. If they are to grow and become healthy, regular attention must be shown. Plants require several key things in order to attain vitality and health, among them, food, water, and sunlight. The key to health and growth is regularity. Think about it. What if we only watered plants three or four times a year? Most would not survive very long, would they? What if we only allowed them sunlight on special occasions? They probably wouldn’t appear so green.
In your special relationships, I hope you’ll water regularly with a generous outpouring of kindness and love. Maybe that involves doing chores around the house — even ones you don’t particularly like. Maybe that involves pampering your partner with a special treat every so often.
I also hope you’ll feed your relationship with things that are healthy. The old saying “garbage in, garbage out” is true in marriage relationships too, you know. A steady diet of harsh words, anger, and discontent can eat away at your marriage. However, words of affirmation, quality time, and selflessness can build up your partner — and boost your relationship to new heights.
On this Valentine’s Day, is your significant relationship sunny and warm — or stagnant, stale, and steeped in discontent? It’s a sad commentary indeed that we often take better care of our cars than our marriages. Does your marriage need a tune-up? If so, consider making an investment in some counseling or enrichment classes — before the leaves of your relationship begin to wither any more. You’ll be glad you did.
Today I celebrate the love I share with my beautiful wife, who truly is one of God’s greatest gifts.
Happy Valentine’s Day!