Valentine’s Day was always a traumatic time for me, during my elementary school years. It was definitely my least favorite holiday. The reason for my dread was that we were required each year to decorate a box and sign cards for all of our classmates.
The first challenge was to find a masculine way to appropriately decorate a Valentine’s box. The only choices available were white, lacey hearts and big, red hearts. The teachers never offered us any camouflage or sports related decorating options. Boys and girls alike, we had to pick from the classic red and white seasonal trimmings for our boxes.
Then, there was the problem of matching the Valentine’s cards with our classroom roll. We were required to give a card to each of our fellow students. Since most of us had known each other all of our lives, that was not an issue. The trouble came when you had to find a card with a message that did not seem too mushy for a girl or too sappy for a boy. You had to save the best card for the girl that you really liked, but make sure that it wasn’t too obvious that you liked her. That’s a lot of stress for a kid in Grades 1-5!
The real pressure came on the day of the school party. It was at this time that we went around the room and dropped our cards into the boxes of our friends. The cookies and punch were a bonus, but then came time to read our cards. Without fail, this was always a time of embarrassment for someone in the class. Either they messed up and gave the wrong card to the wrong person, or they got a card from someone of the opposite gender that was a little too lovey! There were also those candy hearts with printed Valentine’s messages that could be a source of concern.
Thankfully, we all survived the drama and trauma of grade school. We are going to celebrate the season next Sunday with a “Family and Friends Fellowship” after our morning Worship Service. This will be a church-wide “pot-luck” lunch. You do not have to decorate a box or sign any cards, unless you so desire. What we are going to share is some great food and a lot of love. I hope you will make plans to join us.
Serving in love,