Recycle My Heart: A Valentine’s Day Prayer

It wouldn’t be fitting to leave you “postless” on St. Valentine’s Day.  I have ruminated about what to say today to the women who read this blog; women who have been hurt by spouses in ways that make them feel… less like a Valentine and more like a discarded newspaper.  Once upon a time, interesting, but today–old news.

I remember feeling like that. Valentine’s Day was particularly difficult for me when I went through the painful rejection in my first marriage. (See It Happened to a Nice Christian Girl)  After all, the day is all about coupling. Sure, February 14th commemorated the martyrdom of St. Valentine, but it was the time of year spring began and birds came out to seek their mates.  In Middle Age England and France they began the tradition of sending out love letters and tokens of love, using this day as vehicle for seeking a mate and pronouncing their intentions. The poetry of the day alludes to it. Here’s a quote from Chaucer’s Parliament of Foules,  as quoted in The Catholic Encyclopedia:

“For this was sent on Seynt Valentyne’s day
Whan every foul cometh ther to choose his mate.” 1

Well, a chosen mate I seemeth not. Not in the outward circumstances I found myself in.  But in the eternal plan of God, there was another strain of poetry awaiting me, written not by fickle-hearted man, but by the eternal faithful God. The story of His faithful love is told over and over again through the Biblical narrative and the poetry of His Spirit.  What does He say to us all?

“Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love;
Therefore with loving kindness I have drawn you.
Again I will build you, and you shall be rebuilt,
O virgin of Israel!
You shall again be adorned with your tambourines,
And shall go forth in the dances of those who rejoice.
-Jermemiah 31: 3-4

This speaks of the heart of God.  We may have suffered from the adversity that others brought on us, or even of our own making like the children of Isreal. But His love unrelentingly draws us; He rebuilds the broken places and puts joy where there once was mourning, grief and regret.

The Original Recycler
I may have been rejected and discarded like an old newspaper.  But God is in the business of recycling.  He takes all the broken pieces of our lives, yesterday’s news and today’s news, and fashions it all into a beautiful expression of renewal and redemption.  All things are made new. We are not only the object of His love, we are the expression of His love.  And for that, we can dance for joy!

So, Happy Valentine’s Day, you are loved by God.  Celebrate His love for you.  He’s the Author and Finisher of Your Faith, and the Lover of Your Soul. -R


  1. I come back to this posting on God’s valentine of love for us now and then and it always always delights my heart – my aching heart especially! Truth has a way of doing that, and your posts are full of True Truth. He rebuilds the broken places and brings joy where there was hopelessness. Reading God’s words is like telling ourselves the truth. Of course it is healing!

  2. Valentine’s Day is difficult when your marriage seems so far from any romantic ideal that movies and books promote. But as you remind us, Renee, God pursues me and delights in me as the object of His love. I am sought after and delighted in by the One who knows me best! Thanks for the encouragement.

  3. Renee,

    I like the references to recycling… that means my present garbage, or what seems like a hopeless situation, will be turned into a treasure. That helps. Thanks for the post.


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