Love is a word that seems to mean many things. There is the deep love we feel for a parent, spouse or child. There is also the love we feel for our friends or even people in general. We also use the word “love” to talk about our feelings towards pets or inanimate objects. I “love” the color orange, eggs over easy, spring and the anticipation of summer.
Then there is our love of God, a deep and abiding love that flows from him to us and back. His is the love that reminds us to love others and to also love ourselves. It is so easy to feel like we don’t measure up, that we are alone or that God is far way. The truth is that we are never alone because he has promised to be with us always and we do measure up to his expectations because he created each of us.
Special days like Valentine’s day can remind us of the special relationships we have with other people and of the awesome love we have from God, a love that never wavers, a love that is ours for eternity.
O God, Who created all of the earth to reflect Your beauty, help me to see the beauty of this time of year. The Christmas lights are taken down. The music has faded. The parties are over. Now is the fallow time, the time for stillness and reflection. Help me to listen to Your voice in the winds that blow outside my window. When my body is chilled by winters’ frigid air, may my heart be warmed by Your love and concern for me and for my loved ones. When the days seem shorter and darker, let Your light shine in my eyes and in the eyes of my brothers and sisters who share this planet with me. Help me to take time out during these still days to feed my spirit and rest my body so that when spring arrives, my energy will be renewed and ready for the new life that season brings. Now as I look out my window and see few animals and fewer vegetation, let me remember that underneath the mantle of snow, life is bustling and when my own life seems to be dull or at a standstill, You are preparing me for wonderful surprises. Quiet my mind and heart so that I am open to Your Spirit operating in me. Bring peace to our world so torn by violence. Bring peace to our nation and to our families who struggle so hard . Bring peace to my life so that I am able to be an instrument of peace to others.
Loretta Siegele, IFH Chaplain