A very special “Happy Valentine’s Day!” to all my fellow single ladies (and unhappily marrieds, which is even worse, I know!) reading this. God only knows what gamut of emotions this time of year may evoke in us. Loneliness? Bitterness? Feeling sorry for oneself? Or is that just me?

Question: Does anyone else reach out for their dose of schmaltz in the form of a chick flick or romance novel (I have to give a shout-out for my favorites here: The Notebook, The Vow, Where The Heart Is, Gone With The Wind)…only to be left feeling puffy-eyed and maybe a little bit worse?

If so, I’m not that person who is going to get down on you for putting yourself through what others might call “needless torture”. I have those peppy girlfriends myself (*eh-hem*…mostly in actual relationships) who declare that they don’t watch chick flicks and question my sanity for watching them and I trust that you do too.

No, in spite of the tears (which can cleanse the soul!), I like to be reminded that there is true love out there happening. The tricky part is not letting it drag you down. You see, there is a very subtle lie in these movies that whispers that that over-the-top kind love is not happening to you and if you buy into that, it can leave you feeling depressed. “But it’s not happening to me,” you may say. Au contraire!

The overall message of these movies is love. And what is love, really? Well, “…God is love.” (1 John 4:8) and if God is love then we really cannot view love without seeing God too. We all have heard of or seen the widely popular movie Twilight, yes? One thing that I heard so many women swoon over was the fact that the main character, the vampire Edward, never slept but spent his nights watching over his beloved Bella. Ladies, where do you think that idea came from? God does this very thing for you every night with a greater intensity of love than a vampire could ever feel! Ryan Gosling’s character Noah’s faithfulness to his love in The Notebook, writing her letters everyday in spite of never getting a response? Well, let’s just say that God’s faithfulness in reaching out to you doesn’t stop after a year. And if you haven’t seen The Vow yet, Rachael McAdam’s character wakes from a coma and doesn’t recognize Channing Tatum when he tells her that he’s her husband!! Hello!! Can a lady get anymore brain damaged than that?! Unfortunately we, everyday, fall guilty to that kind of disabledness when God calls us His bride and we fail to recognize Him!

So, the next time you watch your favorite chick flick, I challenge you to look for the love between the main characters and then recognize and think on how God’s love for you tops even that. And not to exclude my fellow readers, for a great romance novel, pick up Captivating by John and Stasi Eldredge. It will make God’s love for you seem less like words on a page and more real and romantic than any love you have ever known.

May this Valentine’s Day bring real love (which is God) into your lives and your hearts in a bigger way than ever before! May your tears of sorrow, loneliness or even joy, wash your eyes and give you a clearer vision of the love that is so real and present in your life right now.

…And frankly, my dears, may you always remember that God will always give a…well, let’s just say he cares a whole lot. Xoxox