Valentine’s Day rolls around every year and for those who aren’t in a relationship it can be a tough day. I have one friend that refers to Valentine’s Day as “Remind-Me-that-I-am-Single Day.” I saw a tweet that went like this:
Roses are Red
Violets are Blue,
My boyfriend cheated on me,
It doesn’t rhyme but you get the point. Sometimes Valentine’s Day is not a day of cheer and hearts and flowers and chocolates. For many, it’s a day of sadness of what-once-was or a day of loneliness of what-never-was. Sometimes the church contributes to this loneliness and disappointment with our Valentine’s Banquets, Heart shaped reminders and couples only events.
The Church of the Nazarene statement on singleness says,
Singleness among the people of God is to be valued and sustained by the rich fellowship of the church and the communion of the saints. To live as a single person is to engage, as Jesus did, in the intimacy of community, surrounded by friends, welcoming and being welcomed to tables, and expressing faithful witness. (Church of the Nazarene Manual, paragraph 34)
What I like best in the above statement is: “to live as a single person is to engage, as Jesus did…” If I were to ask you, “Did Jesus lived a full and complete life?” More than likely, all of us would answer, “Yes.” Jesus life was full. He lacked nothing. He completed his mission. But Jesus was single. Jesus was fully human and single from Bethlehem to Golgotha.
Jesus was not a second-class citizen, we would never say that. Jesus accomplished all that the Father had him accomplish. He was blessed and he was single. My point? Singleness is not a curse. Singleness is not a mark of shame. Singleness can and should be embraced in the church community.
What I like second best in the above Manual statement is that singles in the church should be: “surrounded by friends, welcoming and being welcomed to tables, and expressing faithful witness.” In other words, the church at its best is not excluding our brothers and sisters who are single, but embracing them at our functions. It’s creating a place that is not weird or awkward or uncomfortable for the single person to step into a room of mostly couples. It’s including singles in our dinner invitations and home gatherings. It’s coming alongside our single brothers and sisters and doing our best to be a loving, welcoming, embracing, celebrating community.
This Valentine’s Day let’s celebrate it by showering our loved ones (single or otherwise) with the love of Jesus. Let’s fulfill Jesus words in John 13: “Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (John 13:34-35). Let’s make February 14 a day when everyone, everywhere– whatever their relationship status happens to be—know that they are loved!