A Valentine's Day Devotional By: Laura Lee Shaw


Everywhere I look near Valentine's Day, there's chocolate: boxes of chocolate in all the stores, chocolate on TV promising to be the only love you need, chocolate Girl Scout cookies -CHOCOLATE! I even saw chocolate Altoid breath mints in the grocery checkout aisle the other day! I think that's what led me to remember the famous quote from Forrest Gump: "Life is like a box of chocolates...you never know what you're gonna get." (I even remembered it with his accent.)


In reality, that phrase can be true in many ways. We wake up every morning completely unsure of what the day may hold for us. We've made our plans. Sometimes they even happen the way we make them. But we never know for sure, do we? The days that come with caramel in the middle are my favorite. The ones with the strawberry goo are just so-so - but the ones with coconut - YUCK! I'd rather go back to bed.


candy 13373c 1Then there are the days where tragedy or difficult times come out of nowhere, and the chocolate sits in the pantry untouched. There's no sweetness to be had in those moments, it seems. God knows that life as it pertains to circumstances is uncertain for us. That's why He comforts us and reminds us so many times that He is our constant companion, our steadfast friend, our consistently loving God and Savior. He doesn't keep promises the way we do: "When people make promises, they guarantee them by appeal to some authority above them so that if there is any question that they'll make good on the promise, the authority will back them up. When God wanted to guarantee His promises, He gave His word, a rock-solid guarantee - God can't break His word. And because His word cannot change, the promise is likewise unchangeable." (Hebrews 6:16-18, the Message)


You see, no matter what chocolate we are "in the middle of" right now, He is therewith the certainty of His promise today as well as His hope of heaven in the future. Listen to how the verse above continues to encourage us: (vs.19-20) "We who have run for our very lives to God have every reason to grab the promised hope with both hands and never let go. It's an unbreakable spiritual lifeline, reaching past all appearances right to the very presence of God where Jesus, running on ahead of us, has taken up His permanent post as high priest for us, in the order of Melchizedek."


I love the visual picture of grabbing on to Him with both hands as He runs ahead of me to the Father. That makes me able to get up today and praise Him for whatever comes my way. This faith, this confidence, this hope is our unbreakable spiritual lifeline - HIS love for us no matter what, when, how or why. Let's binge on His priceless box of chocolates, today - the sweetest and most satisfying of them all.


"Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him." Psalm 34:8