Well, today is Valentines Day, that famous day for couples to show that they love each other, and for singles to try and change their status. But why do we need a special day to make our significant others feel special, and why do so many single people spend the day feeling hopelessly lost without a girlfriend or boyfriend? Why can't couples show each other daily how much they mean to one another with compliments, words of encouragement, friendship? And why can't those who are single be content with their status and trust that God will show us that special someone on His time; why can't we just be content with Jesus for now?
This is something that has taken me several years of feeling lost in love and trying to find a date on my own, and only recently has God shown me to just give up the search for someone on this earth and just search for the only love we actually need, the love of God. At Impact retreat this past summer, I was told a great, if not slightly cheesy, analogy that describes this perfectly.
Imagine you are lost in a forest, trying to find your way out on your own, but the trees are tall and the forest huge, and there is no way taht you could ever find your way out on your own. Then suddenly you see a tree in the distance above all the others, and instantly you know this is the only way out, and so you start running for the tree as fast as you can. As you are running, you start to see others in the forest, all running towards that same tree, and at someone point one of them comes and starts to run by your side, and together you run for thr tree, helping each other up when you stumble, and giving each other company. But At no point did you ever stray from the path you were on, and you did not change your course, even a little , to run with this person, and yet your paths just happened to come together. Just trust that God will bring this person to your side to help you run the great race, and be patient running alone with Jesus until then, who has never left your side, even before you knew him.
And so in your relationships, make sure that in all things, God comes first. When you start to like someone, pray on it; God wants to hear your prayers, even ones like this. Take time to read the Scriptures(I recommend starting in 1 Corinthians) and listen to what God has to say about relationships, and try to model your actions in all your relationships after Jesus. Constantly evaluate your relationship to be sure that in all things, it glorifies God. Set boundaries as to what you will do in the relationship to avoid impure thoughts and actions; for some this may even mean no kissing at all because it gives you impure thoughts, but for most kissing should be the most you should do, because making out and sex before marriage do not glorify the Lord, and in doing those you are putting the physical relationship before the Lord.
And for those who are looking for a partner, while you shoudl know when God sets the right person in front of you, be on the lookout for the signs that God may be giving you. Men, look for a woman who loves Jesus more than anything in the world, who is strong-willed enough to keep you on the straight path towards God, while also being submissive to you in that she lets you take care of her and provide for her. In 1 Corinthians 11, Paul tells us that man was made in the image of God, and woman of man; so as God provides for men, men provide for women. And women, look for a man who is strong and loves Jesus more than anything in the world, who is attentive to your needs and will do everything to make sure that you are happy. Look for a man who will be the spiritual leader of the house that God has called him to me.
But above all, keep Christ at the forefront of all you do, at all times, for we were made to worship God and through our actions and words share God's love to all. So whether you are in a relationship now or are single looking for a partner, never stop questioning whether those who look in from the outside will know if you are a Christian. If you can be certain that your relationships or pursuits glorify God, then you will have answered your question, and if not then you should see what can be done to change that.