I’m pretty excited about my plans for Valentines Day this year. Why? Because I have an idea that will make it last for three weeks! If you know me, you know that I love plans and systems. I also love weaving lessons into our everyday life.
I have counted back three weeks prior to Valentine’s Day. This year at the end of January (Jan 24, 2020) and until February 14th, we will be reading scripture about love. The main verse we will be highlighting and memorizing is Romans 12:10. “Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.”
In addition to verses we will be reading stories and biblical accounts that illustrate love. David & Jonathan had a strong friendship that lasted through some stressful scenarios. Ruth loved her mother in law Naomi and pledged to remain a companion for her. The prodigal son was embraced by the unshattered love of his father and the Good Samaritan gives us an example of bestowing love on a stranger. But most of all, we can bask in the love of Jesus, what He has done for us and how in gratitude, we can share His love with others.
Live out the words of Romans 12:10
As I take my morning walk, I’ll be on the lookout for a nice branch. I’m thinking about 18-24 inches long, with lots of smaller branches. After rooting the branch with sand into a mason jar, we will start the real work.
What would our home look like, or more importantly, what would it feel like if we lived out the words of Romans 12:10? That sounds like a good challenge doesn’t it? What if instead of taking the last piece of garlic bread, you offered it to your brother? Imagine your sister coming in to the kitchen on her day to do dishes only to find them already complete! What if when you load into the van to head to karate, someone had surprised you by vacuuming without being told? Three weeks with a mission: to “outdo one another in love and showing honor”.
Here’s how to make it happen:
- Step 1: Cut out a bunch of construction paper hearts
- Step 2: OUTDO ONE ANOTHER IN SHOWING HONOR
- Step 3: After doing something FOR someone else in the home, write it down on one of the hearts.
- Step 4: with a needle and thread, make a loop on the heart to hang from the Valentine Tree.
- Step 5: Display the completed hearts bearing your acts of love and honor on the tree.
I think that three weeks of looking to the needs of others could create a habit. Even if you don’t continue the tree for the rest of the year, you have presented the challenge and practiced kindness within your family.
The Valentine Tree will be a new thing for us this year. We usually celebrate Valentine’s Day with a family date night, you can read about it HERE. Another fun thing to do is research about the real St. Valentine and share with your family his story. Of course there are variations but a couple books we read to our children are Saint Valentine and The Story of St Valentine: More Than Cards and Candied Hearts. I hope that this holiday will bring joy to your family as you make intentional plans to grow godly character in your home.
Quick-start results in my home:
As I prepared my tree so that I could take photos, a funny thing happened. My children with great curiosity asked what I was setting up. When I told them about this challenge they themselves got to work. My chore list got attention quick! Then, they were on to write on their paper hearts and hang them on the tree. My boys turned this into a contest of who had the most hearts hanging on the tree and yet another lesson arose. We are adding on the verse about not doing anything out of selfish ambition or vein conceit or with the purpose of gaining approval from men. There is always a new lesson ahead!