Ever heard the true story about where Valentine’s day comes from?
I was really touched when I heard it…
It is told that Valentine was a priest or bishop who helped persecuted Christians escape prisons during third century Rome. During this time the Emperor had also banned marriage for young men, deciding that they made better soldiers. But Valentine saw the injustice of this and continued to marry young lovers in secret. When Valentine’s actions were discovered, the emperor ordered that he be arrested.
During his trial the Court officials asked Valentine, “What do you think of the Roman gods Jupiter and Mercury?” Valentine answered, “They are false gods. The God that Jesus called Father was the only true God.” The Romans did not like this answer so they threw him in prison for insulting their gods.
While in prison Valentine told other prisoners about Jesus and even some of the guards! One of the guards had adopted a blind girl. Her name was Julias. Valentine prayed for Julias and the little girl was healed and given her sight! Can you imagine that? The guard and his whole family believed in Jesus!
In 269AD Valentine was sentenced to death. He went through beatings and a stoning before his final beheading! On the eve of his death Valentine wrote a last note to Julias, urging her to stay close to God. He signed it, “From your Valentine.” His sentence was carried out the next day, and was buried at what is now the Church of Praxedes in Rome. It is said that Julia planted a pink-blossomed almond tree near his grave. Today, the almond tree remains a symbol of abiding love and friendship. On each February 14, Saint Valentine’s Day, messages of affection, love, and devotion are exchanged around the world.” Valentine knew that he might get caught in his witness of Jesus but He loved God and his fellow men so much that he was willing to risk his life to spread the good news of the Kingdom to those who needed to hear it.
What kind of extraordinary love is this?
Greater love has no man than this, than when a man lays down His life for his friends (John 15:13 The Bible)
When Jesus walked about the earth healing unwell people (John 9:39) doing amazing miracles (Matt 14:13) befriending and eating with unpopular outcasts (Mark 2:13) and preaching the Kingdom (Luke 4:18) it was out of His perfect, deep love that led Him to die on a cross to sacrifice himself for us! His death on that cross and resurrection broke the curse of sin and death, that we might know God once again and live as we were originally made to be! From the beginning we were created by God. He made this earth and created us in His image to be His children and reflect His goodness (Gen 5:2) and to enjoy life with him and each other in perfect peace and joy (Genesis 1:31) But time and time again history is proving that when we try to do life without God things get messed up (Gen 3). But when we turn to Jesus, our hearts get transformed, we begin to follow in his footsteps and find ourselves doing the things He does, and we start to see the world transformed too! It becomes a place filled with reflections of God’s love and goodness, filled with unselfish decisions. A place where we are reflecting God’s true love to each other.
Enjoy the song link for ‘Intimacy’ by Melissa and Jonathon Helser at thebottom of this post and hear the call of your Heavenly Father… HE is the one who LOVED YOU FIRST! I pray you will know TRUE LOVE this Valentines day!
Amy Faith Morley © 2015
Click the video link here….