Wednesday, February 14, 2007

a countercultural valentine's day

I've been reading Shane Claiborne's book The Irresistible Revolution and it's got me thinking about what love is all about. I don't know for sure, but I have a feeling St. Valentine would be unhappy with the way his holiday has turned out. When did we turn it into a one-dimensional celebration of eros? Not that there's anything wrong with romantic love--but I'm sad about the poverty of our language that forces us to use one word for love where the Greeks had several. There's brotherly (and sisterly) love too - why don't we have a holiday for that? And then there's agape love, the love that loves because love is its nature just as the sun shines because it is its nature to shine.

So, friends, brothers, sisters, parents, children, and fellow lovers, I invite you to join me in a daring countercultural protest. If you are in a romantic relationship, by all means celebrate that. But go a step further. Be an equal opportunity lover. Do something to show you love your brothers, your sisters, your friends. Call up your mom. Put change in parking meters that have expired. Love strangers, refugees, sick people, homeless people, orphans, people of other races, alcoholics, people with AIDS, Iraqis. Instead of going out to dinner tonight, Bryan and I are making a donation to Holt for Korean orphans who aren't being adopted. (But we are still going out for dessert.)

As Shane Claiborne says: Another world is possible.

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