Who was Valentine?
Valentine was a man who (as it is said) prevented young girls and women from going into prostitution by using his wealth to purchase a dowry for them to get married in the form of 3 gold balls.
the history of how he did it varies depending on where you read it (there are about 2 or 3 versions), but they all revolve around the same basic central theme - rescuing young women in poor families from having to go into prostitution to live by using his wealth as a dowry gift in secret. In those days, a dowry was required in order to be married.
What is "love"?
The Hellenistic greeks at the time of the writing of the New Testament of the Bible used 4 different words for love. in english we use 1 word. one in particular describes this highest kind of love, the kind that God intends us to have toward one another, and the kind God has toward us. it is the word greek word agape.
- Seeking another's highest good.
Today in the world, the kind of love that the world offers has degraded because many times human beings are selfish in nature.
As human beings sometimes we think more about what we can get out of the relationship, but the best way is to truly seek the other person's highest good (agape) - and that is frankly hard to do and maintain. God, help us!
Valentine sought the highest good of the young impoverished ladies in his area by seeking to prevent them from going into prostitution to make a living. I'm not saying that's for every man to do, it's something that's usually more appropriate for a woman to do. But for Valentine, that was his calling. He saw a need and filled it.
Today Valentine's Day has been reduced to a celebration of love, hearts, and boxes of candy and cards and "Will you be my Valentine". Think about the history a bit more. What passionate subject of service to God has God placed on your heart?
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