Editor's Note: This will be a new feature of the blog. I will have a weekly historical item that happened this week in history with a Christian application!
History tells us that on February 14th, 278 A.D. a priest by the name of Valentine was executed. Emperor Claudius II was in charge of Rome at the time and had decided that marriage and engagements were hurting the military might of Rome. Claudius believed that the love that the men who would have been joining his military had for their significant other, was causing them to refrain from becoming a soldier. As a result Claudius banned ALL marriages and engagements. Valentine continued to perform marriages in secret as he believed that an injustice was being done by the Emperor Claudius. Claudius found out about it and that became the death of the man, Valentine, and later would become the start of what we call Valentine's Day. The Catholic Church made Valentine a "saint" after his death, and in approximately 496 AD Pope Gelasius declared that Valentine's Day be celebrated every February 14th.
Today, Valentine's Day is known as a holiday of relationships. It is a holiday in which we are supposed to show how much we care about those in which we love! It seems significant to me that we celebrate a man who stood up for the love and relationships that those in Rome had for one another. It brings the thought to my mind of whether we would be willing to stand up for our love and relationship to our God! I wonder whether we will have the same conviction to do what is right as Valentine did. John, the apostle of love said in his book, "This is love for God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome (1 John 5:3)." I hope that this Valentine's Day you will evaluate your love in the relationship that is most important, the relationship that we have with God. I hope that you will look and see if you are keeping his commandments in your life, and choose to live your life in a way that shows your love for God. Now you know a spiritual application that you can think about on Valentine's day. I hope that your relationship with God is a match made in Heaven which is accomplished by doing what God in Heaven has directed.
"Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things (Phillipians 4:8)."
Love is not merely a feeling. "Being in love" moved them to promise fidelity: this quieter love enables them to keep it. - CS Lewis
Note: I don't condone the religious beliefs that Valentine held nor of the Catholic Church, however I do condone his stand for things that are just!