Yes, love has been in the air this week at the Winkel Homestead.
(Jackson getting sweet luvin hugs from little Miss R.)
As I mentioned last week, I think Valentines Day sometimes get's a bad rep.
It seems for every star struck lover out there gazing at the shadows the candlelight casts on their rose bouquets, there's about 10 Charlie Browns who got sucker punched by "the little red haired girl"
These days I'm a blessed, blessed, blessed woman of the star struck lover type, but I've had my Charlie Brown days too... plenty of them particularly between my freshmen and Senior years of high school
But enough about teenage Ashley.... let's get on with the love shall we?
Because "Valentines" is a big word for my little tots, we took to using the words "Love Day"a few years ago to describe February 14th and the moniker just stuck.
This morning during our Bible Time we read from 1 Corinthians about love and broke down the characteristics and how they pertained to the life we were living right now
in our home
Love is Patient.... that translated as "not whining at mama when I want a cup of juice and she's slow to get it for me"
Love is Kind .... "Use my inside voice and my nice words"
Love does not boast and is not proud... "It's not okay to think you are the best, more than Mama or Bear or Jasper (her cousin), think about what they want to play first"
Love is not rude ..."Use my manners, say please and thank you"
Love is not easily angered...."When Jackson bugs me, don't scream"
Love keeps no record of wrongs.... "Don't stay mad at mama when she scolds me or says no cartoons"
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth... "I love good things and not bad things"
Love always protects.... "Keep my tiny toys away from Jackson"
Love always trusts ...."I'll obey my mom cause she knows what's best"
Love always hopes ...."think that the best will happen"
Love always perseveres..."Keep trying to do good, and when we mess up,we try again."
The flowers still hanging on from Susan and the table runner quilted for me by my 'mother in love'
We sat for a while talking all this out.
Her sweet brown head rested on me just above my heart.
I realized how basic her world was, how simple her moral dilemmas.
Were mine really so much more complicated?
A conversation with friends the night before kept circling back to the main points of how all our choices and decisions must stem from the most basic of Christ's priniples, "LOVE the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your strength. And lLOVE your neighbor as yourself". (Matt. 22:37-40)
Really love is so very basic.
So very worth celebrating.
Especially at this cold and trying time of year. The urge to self nurture at other's expense is always there. We complain and bicker and tire of each others company. We so badly long for reprieve from the darkness and cold, but forget to first seek the opportunity to give that to the others around us. The temptation for selfishness feels almost palpable.
The jars of homemade candy we made last week
The cynics are consistent in their yearly disdain for a holiday they write off as a marketing scam to sell cheap chocolates, jewelery and flowers. The media tells us our self-definition and true happiness will be found in romantic love, but too many Charlie Browns are left in loneliness along that highway....
What value then does Valentines Day truly have?
The value of small, basic exchanges of a little more patience, kindness, humility, courtesy, valor, integrity, trust, hope and constancy.
I believe Love Day is a day to celebrate.
Heart-shaped Pizza night with new friends
In our humble abode the celebration has been gearing up since last week and I believe it will continue for the week to come... I think I'll be spreading it here and there around the posts of this week if you care to drop in and hopefully be inspired, encouraged and across the miles of actual distance- feel the love. :)
All week I've been brought to tears listening and contemplating this song,
I hope you enjoy it as my Valentine to you.
Now these three things remain:
Faith Hope and Love
But the greatest of these is Love.