It’s February! Stores are fully stocked with hearts, flowers, chocolates, and other evidence of romance. Valentine’s Day specials and advertisements for restaurants fill commercial slots on television. People are welcoming “the month of love” with sappy posts on social media about their significant others.
This is all fine and dandy- but before we get sucked into the commercialism of this month’s theme, let’s take a moment to think about what love really looks like… And who better to help us understand than the Saints!
There are a LOT of quotes about love from the Saints- and for a good reason, too. These wonderful people are in communion with God. And God is Love. It makes sense that they have such great things to say about the subject! However, most of us don’t have hours to spend reading quotes about love (although I’m sure we all wish we did!). So for simplicity’s sake, I’ve narrowed down today’s post to five of my favorites:
“My vocation is love.” – St. Therese of Lisieux
Whether you are single, married, or consecrated to religious life, your vocation is love. We are all called to love and be loved. God created us to love us and asks us to show His love to each other. That is the basic foundation of why we are here on earth.
“What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has the eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men. That is what love looks like.” – St. Augustine
Love isn’t all candy hearts and roses, even if that is a sweet way to let someone know you care about them. It’s seeing the dignity of every person. Treating them as Jesus would treat them. Respecting them as your brother or sister in Christ.
“Do not forget that true love sets no conditions; it does not calculate or complain, but simply love.” – St. Pope John Paul II
God the Son loved us so much that he DIED for us. Are you willing to love someone that much? We are called to love as Christ loved, which means unconditionally. Not just if they take us to a nice dinner on February 14th.
“It is love alone that gives worth to all things.” – St. Teresa of Avila
Without love, we have nothing. Nothing is worth doing if it cannot be done in love. And everything we do in love, no matter how big or small the gesture, gives great glory to God.
“Love begins at home, and it is not how much we do… but how much love we put in that action.” – St. Teresa of Calcutta
Like I mentioned before, love is more than chocolate and romance. It is sacrifice. And we can make sacrifices and show love for our families by doing the little things. Take out the trash. Wash the dishes. Cook a meal. Hug your brother. Compliment your child’s artwork. Tell your sister you love her. Pick a flower for your mother. Buy your husband his favorite snack at the store. In doing small acts of love, we show God’s love to our families- who in return go out and show His love to the rest of the world.
Remember that we are all called to love with God’s unconditional love, and that in reflecting the sacrifice of the Cross in our everyday actions we can show the world what love really looks like- this month and all year long!