How to have a Happy Valentine’s Day (and every day)

It may be a bit late for you this year, but the same things that make Valentine’s great can make today great too.

 (written February 14th)

Today there will be lots of hearts, lots of chocolate, and lots of emotions. Maybe they will be happy ones. Maybe they will be sad ones. But emotions there will be. Holidays, holy days, always bring with them a whopping dose of the emotional. And I don’t think Valentine’s Day is any different. 

Here are some suggestions for having a very happy Valentine’s Day: 

  • Write your own story. Your relationship status, age, stage of life does not define you. That story has already been authored and the author is you. I hope what you are writing today is I am loved so much that God himself gave himself for me. Talk about a present, a grand gesture, the most amazing of sacrifices. That is how much YOU are loved. And your identity is secure as HIS first and foremost. So, take the pen from the hands of even those most close to you (and especially those distant social media personas that make you feel less than) and write with a firm hand. I know who I am. I know whose I am. And I am loved. 

  • Stop comparing!!! Girl, your life is your life. And you don’t know them! You think you know because you’ve been told, but you don’t know. You don’t know what their relationship is really like much less what their happiness has cost. Live YOUR life because it is the only one that you can live. And find what you LOVE about your season. Maybe it is that you can have sushi anytime that you want! Maybe it is the fullness of a million children all set on destroying the clean floor you just swept. Find the beauty in your now and stop comparing your ugly places to other people’s beautiful bits. 

  • Seek to serve. Instead of judging what you received from today, think of what you can give others. Is there someone in your life who could use a card? Can you sing? Could you go and sing some love songs at a local nursing home? It might take thirty of your minutes, but it might make the difference for someone else. Can you bring someone a latte this afternoon for no reason at all? Who in your life, in your family, can you use this day to celebrate, honor and love really big. The way to the happiest days, the most meaningful days, is serve others!

  • Ask for what you want. If you are in a relationship, let your expectations be known. Don’t assume that he knows you hate flowers or love white chocolate. Don’t assume she knows you’d prefer a night in to going out. Communicate and ask. Asking doesn’t make it less romantic or special. It makes you a better partner. And if you aren’t in a relationship, but you WANT to go out with the girls, ask! Don’t wait to be invited, create a party, make the move, and you might make someone else’s day.

  • Honor all efforts. So what if he gave you the worst Walgreen’s bear ever. So what if dinner is burned. Isn’t the point the value of the person not the gift. My child gave paper to all her classmates today. Paper. Cute paper but still . . . paper. And she was thrilled and so were they. Why? Because they value each other and they honor the effort. Kids do that don’t they. They get excited about Valentine donuts. They are thrilled with some M&Ms and a coloring book. It doesn’t take much to make them feel seen and loved. Be like a kid today. Honor the people in your life who make an effort, even one that isn’t that great on the scale of Valentine dreams, to make you feel loved. 

  • Remember Valentine. St. Valentine was martyred because he continued to preach the gospel and marry Christian couples. He was true to himself and his faith. Ironically, Valentine’s has become what some would consider a fake holiday, a day based on lies or materialism. It doesn’t have to be that for you. Be true to who you want to be today. Love big. Give generously. Cheer enthusiastically. Share what you have with others. And remember the example of St. Valentine.