Now that Valentine’s Day has come and gone, I can talk about real love. I say that because I’m an anti-Valentine’s day kind of person. Now, hold your judgment for one minute while I explain. I actually love romance. I’m a hopeless romantic. But to me, stamping a date on a calendar that puts pressure on men to deliver something special takes the fun and the romance out of the equation. We’ve commercialized this romantic love into a special love-day package. Step one; make reservations at a restaurant where they have a special meal including dessert and wine at a neatly packaged price. Step two; buy a bouquet of flowers and some chocolate (or if you’re a lucky girl, some major bling). Step three; smile, and know that any responsibility or creativity in displaying your love and feelings for your wonderful girlfriend has been taken care of for you so any real intimate sentimentality or originality has been squashed.

Me? I want to know that my true Love is thinking about me at random times during the day when we are apart. I want him to show me that—in his own unique way—be it a text, a flower on a random day, a note that shows he’s been paying attention to what’s important to me, or maybe just a smile and a kiss when we are standing in line. Romance for me is that he knows I hate calling repairmen to come fix things so he does that for me without asking. That he knows I love to watch Downton Abby so he stays quiet during the episode and records it for me if I’m going to miss it. Or that he listens when I rant and doesn’t always try to fix what’s wrong, just supports me and lets me know he’s on my side and there for me. That’s love to me. That’s romance. Oh, and a quiet lovely vacation on a secluded beach “don’t stink much neether.”

But let’s talk about love in general—not just romantic love. Love has many meanings, both in the dictionary and to each individual. It is the most talked about subject on the planet and for good reason. Want to know why we are here? It’s to love. To love each other and to love our creator, God.

One of the things that made me know I was on the right track when I finally put my faith in Christ was that all the questions I was having about things I didn’t understand in the Bible and in the world were put aside as something that I could trust God about and that would be revealed to me later (or not). Why could I trust Him? Faith. But also because Jesus told us what we really need to remember.

“Love one another; just as I have loved you, you are to love one another.”

He said “love” three times in one sentence and since Jesus didn’t stutter, I’m pretty sure he was emphasizing the word, love.

All of us—Christians and non Christians alike could use a dose of this every morning. A daily reminder of how wonderful the world would be if we first chose to love.

I was listening to the radio the other day and the speaker I was listening to said we are living in an “I” world. There’s the iPhone, the iPad, iTunes…you get my drift. He said we need to get out of that thinking and start helping each other. Interesting thought.

So, how to start.

Well, for me, I’ll start by not getting upset at the other drivers on my way to work tomorrow morning. I’ll look in the eye of the guy with his hand out and give him at the very least my respect and concern. I’ll pray for the people who hurt me and my family and friends and boldly ask God to turn their hearts toward love. And I’ll keep looking for my allusive true Love. But in the meantime am very blessed and thankful for the love of my family and friends.

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