Valentine’s Day is gone for this year, but the history behind this holiday has a lesson for any season. It’s a story of true love and one that inspires people to truly love other people.
Today Valentine’s Day is associated with romantic love. That is not how the holiday started out at all! It’s the story of a Roman bishop who risked his life to follow God.
At the time Rome was in the middle of a battle with many different nations. The emperor wanted strong, focused soldiers to fight his battles. Therefore, he outlawed marriage. He didn’t want his men to be distracted with ties back at home. Valentine was one of the few who was willing to risk his life by performing marriage ceremonies.
Eventually, the emperor found out about the “illegal” activity and Valentine was arrested. He was under the care of a jailer who had a blind daughter. Valentine was able to help the blind daughter, although history does not tell us how. However, we do know that no romantic love was involved in their relationship. When Valentine went to face his sentence of death, he left behind a note for the jailer’s daughter signed, “From your Valentine”.
So you see, the first Valentine’s Day had nothing to do with love between a couple but of the sacrificial love of one man who was willing to die to serve others.
~ Carrie and Melinda ~