Valentine.

This time of year brings out a few different types of people. There are the couples, excited to share their love with one another. There are the bitter singles who hate the holiday because they are mad about their own relationship status. Then you have the indifferent category- the ones who regardless of being in a relationship or not could care less about the day. It is in fact, just a day. And I beg the question…could there be more?

A culture is brilliantly marketed with commercials, flower/chocolate companies, lingerie ads, and more, all the while enticing couples to do something or give something  to the one you love.  What I find so tragically sad about this is that the marketing is in fact only for one specific day. Really? We really want to encourage couples to show their love once a year? Well the advertising isn’t exactly doing that, but it sure is close. We live in a world that cares so much about satisfying our need. Think about the ads around Valentine’s Day. How many of them aren’t sexually charged or about giving something just in order to receive something? Tell me it has more than this.

Between “free communication” weekends with eHarmony, Match.com and similar dating sites, it seems as though love equates relationship status, not love equating….well, love. At the same time, there are so many singles that are bitter and angry because of lacking a relationship. Many will drink away their loneliness, while many others will engage in porn, while still others might eat their feelings and spend the night in a bitterness binge on Netflix. Valentine’s Day is just a day, yet so many people find themselves feeling utterly alone.  Why can’t they be happy?  Why can’t they have someone special?  This assumes that being in a relationship equates happiness. And it also assumes that happiness is a standard for life (I’ll explain).

Then there’s me. The single who doesn’t care. There are plenty of people who don’t actually care about this holiday. You know something? I have never actually celebrated Valentine’s Day…at least not romantically. I  would love to be asked out for a cute date and to be treated special. Who wouldn’t? But my happiness is not contingent on how someone else treats me. My happiness is not contingent on anything else in this world. I know I matter and have value and worth because of God. Period. Its that simple. Everyone needs to know they matter.  Like I said, I would absolutely love to be asked on a Valentine’s Date with a fancy restaurant, flowers, chocolates, and maybe dancing. Yeah, I’m a romantic. But you know what? It’s okay.  Unlike culture, I’m not looking to get laid, get gifts, or anything else that this holiday heavily influences. I’m just me content with where I am.

I commend the couples that go and celebrate. Go! Have fun with your husband, wife, boyfriend, girlfriend! Be romantic in your own way. Make the night special. Get each other gifts, or chocolates (or cake?), or whatever else you feel like. Let me challenge you with something here: put your significant other first.  Instead of caring about what you’re getting, what you want…maybe surprise them by making the night all about them. Heck, if you know they’re already doing something for you, do something else for them later in the week. But make it about them, not you. Show them a love that is selfless, worthy, and beautiful.

For those of us that are single, please for the love of God, stop whining and being bitter. Yes be sad if you really are, but stop being angry at the couples who are actually happy and enjoying their relationship, and the night devoted to “love”. But please please just stop. Do something that betters you that day. Go volunteer. Go have a bro-date or a girls day. Go hiking. Camping. Do something that gets your mind off of single life and have fun. Events like “Night to Shine” by the Tim Tebow Foundation are fantastic because its a Valentine’s event that doesn’t care about your age, weight, body type, relationship status. It simply cares for you to know you matter.  Do something that still puts others first.

I end with this. Know that no matter what, God loves you. You matter. You have value. You are worthy. No relationship, one-night-stand, hookup, Tinder swipe, pornographic image, or (dare I say) healthy relationship will have bring satisfaction or happiness, at least not long term and most definitely not joy like that God can bring you. He loves you so much.

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