I think the first year Valentine’s Day was no longer associated with the joy of fold-able Valentines and Dad’s and Mom’s anniversary was freshman year of high school. That year, I walked into biology class to find my lab partner covering our table with a large bouquet of flowers. She pointedly informed me that they were from her boyfriend. That was just the start! I soon discovered that this day was an ongoing competition of who would have the most flowers to show off in the halls. Not once in those four years did a boy give me flowers to carry. I tried to get through those days without it bothering me. I mean, I worked at a florist—I knew what a waste it was to carry flowers out of water all day! They’d be dead before the day was over…
I also made it through college Valentine’s Days without any flowers or affectionate gifts from a young man. Most of those years were spent with girlfriends and fun. However, that “fun” was a deliberate attempt to push down the taste of bile that comes with a Valentine-less Valentine’s Day. Every year there was an unspoken whisper of hope that this would be the last one—that next year I’d finally be someone’s Valentine. I look around and know I am not the only one with this struggle. I remember a college friend expressing her sorrow over breaking up with her boyfriend before Valentine’s Day, making her spend yet another one alone. Her pain was real, and, two years later, I was in a similar boat feeling that sting. I am again Valentine-less when most of my friends and all my siblings have a Valentine to make the day meaningful, and yes, I feel that hurt, that disappointment that this is not the year to break my perfect streak of being single on Valentine’s Day.
However, I made a change this year and stopped and asked why? Why do I care any more on February 14th that I do not have a significant other than on February 13th or 15th? It is because since childhood our culture has told us that a measure of our value is having a Valentine. But that is NOT TRUE! Having someone buy you flowers is nice and thoughtful, but it does not make you worth more than if you had not been a recipient. Whether you have a Valentine or not, remember God created you—knit you together in your mother’s womb. He calls you by name and knows the number of hairs on your head. Though he created the flowers, beautiful as they are, you are of far more value to him. You are loved on Valentine’s Day and every day. So feel the freedom to embrace this truth and enjoy Valentine’s Day this year. I will be!
Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Luke 12:6-7 NIV