This article was originally published in Spirit-Filled Woman Magazine, 2020,
and most recently edited for Where Joy Is publication, 2022
Valentine's Day is here and maybe you are submerged in a pile of Kleenexes while eating pizza from the box while binge-watching romantic comedies, or you are dressed in black and declaring yourself a despiser of all things "lovey dovey."
I get it. When I was a single mom, I teetered between simply rolling my eyes and lying in the fetal position on the floor doing the ugly cry. There was no in-between.
This time of year is hard on the single mothers and those no longer married. It messes with their heads and rips the scab off of their slowly healing hearts. There are a lot of hard emotions they have to deal with. In my season as a single mother, I would get a knot in my stomach when I saw the cards, balloons and oversized stuffed animals in the department stores. I got a lump in my throat when I would watch couples walk hand-in-hand down the street. I fought against bitterness and anger every day. I would go to God again and again and whine, "But whyyyyy?" I can throw a pity party worthy of streamers and a cake from the bakery!
As a little girl I certainly did not ever imagine I would experience the amputation of divorce. If you are in that season now, my heart goes out to you. I hope what I am about to say eases your pain.
You know, love isn't a bad thing and desiring to be loved is not wrong. God made us people who need relationships. Problems arise when we value earthly relationships over the Creator of them. In the times when I'm distraught and having an inner spiritual tantrum, the thought of going to the Bible is not appealing. It's just not. What I want is a quick fix. I want what I want and I want it right now. But if you were to sit quietly and think about every event in Scripture, the only eye rolling you would be doing would be over your own foolishness. Been there, done that...and I will likely do it again! It's quite embarrassing to completely forget who God is. But when I take a little stroll through history and see the Lord as He is in His Word, the wonder and awe comes flooding back and seeps into the ground of my parched soul.
In Genesis, He creates all that is and calls it good. That means you, as one of His creation, are considered a very good thing He has made.
In Exodus He stands as a Deliverer of all the fears, pain, abuse and desolation that hold us in bondage.
In Joshua, He proves Himself steadfast and faithful even when we haven't been faithful at all.
In Judges, He demonstrates His patience when we forget Him and His mercy when we desperately need it.
In Ruth, He shows us that He cares for those who feel like an outcast and will always provide exactly what we need. In Nehemiah, He proves that He can and will resurrect and rebuild what we thought would remain in ruins.
In Job, He reveals Himself as all-powerful and Sovereign.
In the Psalms, He reminds us that He listens to us and He is kind.
In Proverbs and Ecclesiastes, He presents Himself as the source of wisdom and life.
In the books of the Prophets, He protects and He speaks and He overthrows every enemy.
In the Gospels, He heals the wounded and sick and grieving and places Himself on the whipping post and the cross so we won't have to be separated from Him anymore.
In Paul's letters, He displays His sufficiency and His grace.
In Revelation, He exalts Himself as our Advocate, our Redeemer, our Savior and our King.
Book after book, chapter by chapter, we find Him there proving to us grief-stricken, lonely people that He will never, ever leave us. Page after page we see His strength, His protection, His goodness and His sacrificial love that puts everything else ever done in history to shame.
We find Him in the wilderness and in the Promised land. We find Him in the loss and in the gain. And the greatest thing of all is that He will never change who He is. We don't have to worry about waking up one morning to find Him gone. He isn't going to pack His heavenly suitcase and walk out the door. We will never hear Him tell us that He doesn't love us anymore. Do not allow yourself to forget His love!
*In this season when romance and loneliness are simultaneously at their peek, mark yourself as one in whom His heart delights to love and to save.