When we think of Valentine’s Day, we often think of red roses, candy in heart-shaped boxes and cherubs flying about shooting starry-eyed lovers with arrows. But did you know that the origin of Valentine’s Day actually comes from the life and death of a man who died rather than giving up his faith?
Legend has it that Valentine was a Roman Christian who was martyred during the persecution of Christians in the third century by Emperor Claudius II. According to Claudius II, Christians were guilty of treason by refusing to worship the Emperor by declaring publicly, “Caesar is Lord!”
Rather that obeying Claudius II's decree, Valentine continued to minister in prison by witnessing to his prison guards, and when Valentine’s actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that Valentine be put to death. As the legend is told, while in jail awaiting his sentence, St. Valentine left a farewell note for the jailer’s daughter who had become his friend, signing it, “From Your Valentine.”
While Valentine's life was a true testament of faith and love for God, no greater love has been shown throughout history than the love that God has shown for His children. He sent us His only Son, Jesus Christ, to earth, as a man, to die for us. God’s love for us was so powerful that He was willing to sacrifice His one and only Son in order for us to, once again, be able to walk side by side with Him.
Our very salvation came through love. His delight in and love for you is boundless and beyond measure. Our prayer is that you know and experience His great love for you. Happy Valentine's Day!