This is my article that will be published this week in The Natoma-Luray Independent section of The Russell County News and in The Plainville Times.
Friday was Valentine’s Day. Valentine’s Day is most certainly not a Church holiday, so there are no lessons on love and romance to be found here. Instead, the Church does what the Church always does, for it is what the Church does best: it prays.
The Church prays for those who are married; that husbands and wives might find joy in each other. That as their marriage moves from months to years to decades, they would continue to find love and respect for one another; and that according to the Lord’s good pleasure, their relationship would be blessed with children who are faithful to their parents and to the Lord.
The Church prays for those who are in relationships; that man and woman would be respectful of each other, ever mindful that their relationship is one about growth and support, not the fulfillment of sexual desire. The Church prays that if it is pleasing to the Lord, that this man and woman would be brought into marriage, or that they would be led to the one that has been set apart for them.
The Church prays for those who are single; that both men and women would resist the temptations of sin that are laid before them by a sexualized society. And the Church prays that the Lord would grant them patience as they anticipate the day when they will meet the spouse that God has chosen for them; or that God would grant them acceptance that they have been called to remain single throughout their earthly days.
The Church prays for those who are widowed; that as they grieve for the loss of their loved one, that the Lord would comfort them in their sorrow and remind them of His promise to never leave them or forsake them. And the Church prays that there might be a happy reunion in heaven.
Finally, the Church prays for all of its members, that they would find faithful spouses, who confess the name of Jesus in all that they say and do; that both men and women would be kept free from sin; and that all people would be reminded of the true and perfect love that is only found in Christ Jesus our Lord.