Be my Valentine! Tis the day for exchange. Today countless gifts are purchased and given to show one's love and affection. Candy, Chocolate, flowers, cards. Tis the day for Love. Be my Valentine!
We pray today that love does not sell it self short and simply settle for flowers that will fade, cards that will be discarded, chocolate that will cause weight gain, and candy that may go stale.
May today be a true exposition of love: May you love one another as I have loved you! (Jesus)
It is both a sad tragedy and and a comedy of errors that as we enter into this day of love, we read in the book of genesis love gone sour.
The happy couple of Adam and Eve, who were filled with awe and wonder at the gift of each other find themselves in a all to familiar "blame" game: whose fault is it, anyway?
Adam blames his wife, the wife blames the snake, and all get expelled from paradise.
Yet, the story doesn't end in failure of love. God continues to guide them and work with them and lead them along the path. Adam and Eve do not call it quits. They continue forth, re-learning, time and time again, what love is all about.
There is hope in the story of the fall. As the narrative tells us, "the man called his wife Eve, because she became the mother of all living. For the man and his wife the Lord God made leather garments, with which he clothed them." A sign of God's continued grace.
But there were consequences to the fall, from the garden they were sent and a Cherubim with a fiery revolving sword was stationed to guard the way to the tree of life.
We shall see the sword again!
The sword will appear on calvary and shall pierce the side of the one who will come to allow access once again to the tree of life. Only this tree is not in the garden of Eden but on Calvary. The cross of Christ is the tree of life, and from there we all shall eat and live: Lest you eat my body and drink my blood you shall not have life with in you.
The cross is the wedding bed of Christ and the church. It was spousal love that led to the fall it is spousal love that redeems. Truly, this is why we celebrate Valentine.
On the Cross Jesus looks out to the world and behold he says, "Be mine..." What an exchange! Here Jesus gives his life that we might have life. So much for chocolate, candy, cards, and flowers. There is something greater and more lasting here.
This is the strength of St. Valentine. May it be ours as well.
"Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the Church and offered his life up for her." Ephesians 5