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Omaha, Nebraska, United States
I am more and more convinced that most congregations die from a staggering lack of imagination. Let's change that. Let's imagine a creative future with God and each other together. Drop me a line on email or leave a comment if you have thoughts on God, Jesus, congregations, the church or whatever.... I look forward to our conversations.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Valentine's Day post-mortem

Another Valentine's Day passes, and another year goes by commemorating romantic love--the most trivial kind. As one of my friends said about Valentine's Day, "I hate it...everyone is so happy. Ick." There is something to that.

Chris and I were at a restaurant wanting to order our favorite burger and beer, when we were told they had only a "special" Valentine's Day menu available that night. Burgers, apparently, are not appropriate for this day of celebration? Perhaps the fried onions would have been too much in a post-dinner kiss? Who knows?

But as we left (we went to Five Guys Burgers for dinner instead) there were a whole bunch of guys there wondering what they had gotten themselves into this evening. Their dates were pointing out all the cool bric-a-brac and memorabilia that makes that restaurant somewhat fun, but all they could see were hefty prices, and almost no chance for their usual beverage of choice...and really, who wants to do Valentine's Day sober?

But we get so caught up in a trying to make romance a subsitute for caring and concern for another that we miss the whole point of "love." One of my younger friends, whose current boyfriend is quite comfortable talking about loving her, said to me that she thinks about this love a lot. I've decided, she said, that if I wouldn't jump out in front of a bus to save him, I probably don't love him. So we aren't lovers. I nodded. I said, You're right. Lovers don't do that...but friends do.

She was concerned. A friend jumps out in front of the bus...not a lover...what you use as a defintion of lover most of us use as a definition for a friend...So if you don't want to make him your friend--OK, but then he's probably your lover. (She tapped me here.)

What is the day we use to celebrate the friends in our lives? The people who mean most to us--and some of our friends can be lovers too (there is a song brewing here!) When Jesus was leaving his disicples for the last time, he called them friends, because there is no higher honor to give to a person...would that Hallmark and all the people obsessed with Valentine's Day have the same notion. One friend is more important than a 100 lovers.

May your tables be full, and your conversations be true.


Gail said...

I saw love last week. The kind Valentine's Day never captures. My sister has ALS. She's not able to move. Her husband care for her in all the ways a person would care for an infant. He lifts her from the bed. He places her on a makeshift toilet. He feeds her. He keeps her bi-pap machine operating and uses the cough-assist machine, He cares for the three children. He tries to ranch. And he's kind about most of it. He didn't need to buy a heart-shaped box of chocolates to prove his love. . .

Scott Frederickson said...

I am sure God smiles at this love...blessings for your family.