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Saturday, February 13, 2010

Happy Valentines Day!

A Valentine from God

Day Seven Ministries

I was at my lowest the year I found out who I really am. In fact, it was this month, the month of valentines and messages of love. I never really cared about those before, my self-esteem being so strong (I thought), but that year had been one of stripping: my identity, my value, my roles, (to name just a few) had all been stripped from me and a message of love- a message to bolster me and give me back some identity, some value, something to do-was so desperately needed!

I was not even seeking these things, this message. Yes, I was going through the motions of asking, but I didn’t expect an answer, certainly not the answer I received. All I knew was this: I no longer knew who I was or who I was to be. Into that void-where who I had been, who I thought I was, who I had made myself into was stripped- He spoke. He told me who I really am.

“You are a pleasure and treasure, a prize worth fighting for.”

I wish I could take the time to share all the ways that this message impacted me (both immediately and in the years since then) but that would take too long. More importantly, telling you how this message impacted me could lead you to miss the reality of God’s love: it is there for even you! Not simply in the “God so loved the world” truth, but in the “God so loves YOU” truth - a truth so vastly universal that we diminish the very personal intent and miss what is spoken to our own wounded hearts. Instead, I will attempt to give guidance to each of you as perhaps you seek to know the truth of God’s love, or know even more of His love.

Just when I was experiencing messages that said, “you are no longer a pleasure to me”, and hearing from the person closest to me, “I no longer treasure you”, God spoke His eternal truth to me. God’s word (and please, for the moment, can we drop the pretense of “God’s word” being only the Bible, and allow His word to mean what it is always meant to be-a personal message of love?) is affirming. God’s message negates the harsh reality of human appraisal and measures each of us in the eternal.

Can you take the time to listen to the messages you hear? If they are not affirming and eternal they are not from God! Ask Him! He longs to have you hear, take the time to listen.

Just when I was being told, “You are no longer worth it”, God told me I was worth fighting for. Not just a “prize” to mark off as “gotten”, but one worth fighting for - for keeps, for always. God’s message of love did not seem to fit me. It wasn’t meant to- not that day or even now, years later. God’s message of love is something to grow into, and each day, while being covered by that love, allows us to grow even stronger, even larger, ever seeking to know the depth and heights and breadth of that love. God’s message of love is all encompassing.

For years, I rightly treasured this message as my own. Yes, I shared it with some (a message of love of this magnitude cannot possibly be contained) but God allowed me to be nurtured by this love; to be healed and strengthened by this love. I grew in this love. Especially when the human evaluations hit hard, I could be sustained. Even when the experience of every day seemed to erode my heart, I was strengthened. And as I grew in this love, I was reminded to share this message of love with others.

I told my daughters…and they posted the phrase as a status online.

I told my sisters…and they shared in my new, deeper, joy.

I told others, and now I am telling you. God’s word, while deeply personal to all of us, is also universal.

Read these verses and ask God to speak to you through them. Seek His heart as you seek to be known. Believe Him when He tells you, “you are a pleasure and treasure, a prize worth fighting for.”

Ex. 19:3, Dt. 7:6, 14:2, Hebrews 10:32, Ps. 135:4, 147:10-11, Jer.31:20, Eph. 1:3-5

Allow His word to affirm you, give perspective to time and space. Give in to His words of love that grow you into who He intends you to be. And, when the time is right, share with someone how His love has changed you, and how His love longs to live with everyone.

Kelly Serafini, Day Seven Ministries

copyright 2010

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