February: First Loved

February is not my favorite month. A few of our Christmas decorations are droopily
hanging outside. It’s just too cold to make the effort to take them down. Does every
family have someone sick these days… with some known or unknown virus? The days
are getting longer… but not that much. Lent is between us and Spring.

For me, love, redeems February. In the middle of the month is the holiday of love,
Valentine’s Day. I so enjoyed the project of decorating a Valentine bag as a child and
making valentines for my classmates. I am happily surprised that my husband invited
me out for dinner on a weeknight. I am up for any reason to crack open the chocolate. I
am looking forward to our all-parish fundraiser, Hearts on Fire. More than anything I am
delighted to have an excuse to lift up the theological virtue, Love, to remind us of the
grace of being loved.

There are so many divisive forces it seems in our local and global world. I appreciate
being reminded of the simple sentiments and symbols of love. My prayer this month is
to try to soak in God’s love. More than anything I want to grow in trust of being first
loved by God. If we need a day, a holiday, a celebration, a season to just remember
that… I am grateful.

C.S Lewis said, “Though our feelings come and go, God’s love for us does not.” So,
whatever February is bringing, or not, maybe it is a good time in this middle of winter, to
check in on how well we are caring for ourselves and others, how evident is our love, in
our words and actions, remembering, “We love, because He first loved us.” (1John 4: