Today, all the Valentine’s candy is 50-75% off! And replacing it is the Easter candy. Away with the conversation hearts (my fave!) and in with the Peeps (another fave!). Immediately following the February 14th holiday, we discard everything pertaining to it, and move on to the next moneymaker.
Hallmark made you do it.
Don’t get me wrong, I love a good piece of holiday candy (it’s the 6th love language). And I love the idea behind the “Hallmark” holidays… you know the ones the card companies turn into a big deal so that you’ll spend your money on their stuff – Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day. There’s nothing wrong with celebrating the people we love, and our moms and our dads. There’s nothing wrong with buying cards and candies and taking special people out to a nice lunch or dinner.
It’s incredibly ok that the world sends gentle reminders to us to cherish the people we love. We should want to shower them with kindness and love and celebrations.
But the truth of the matter is that these days are hard for some people. They’re hard for the single. For the childless. They’re hard for those who are parenting small ones alone. They’re hard for the ones whose parents have passed or they’re in a season of grief.
So what is the church’s role to the people who are not so lucky as to be in a season where they are celebrated during a “Hallmark” holiday?
It is very simple: to reach out.
It isn’t complicated. It was always to reach out. To check in and say hello. To recognize that on some of these days, though they are just another day, people in their community may not have a person to get dinner with, go to brunch with, or cookout with.
But the people who are hurting in these seasons also have a role: to reach out. To say something. To say they feel lonely or would like to join your family for lunch. Or to say that these moments are hard to be in the season they’re in.
See how both sides have an obligation to reach out? See how the church has a role to reach out to its hurting brothers and sisters, but that’s not a one-sided obligation. It’s a two way street.
There are always going to be people around us in seasons of sadness when others are celebrating. Seasons of grief when others have joy. And that’s ok. It’s important for all of us to remember that we are all parts of one Body (1 Corinthians 12), working together to make it run. It doesn’t matter our season of life, we all have a role in the church, we all have a role to one another – and that’s to reach out.
In the words of Edwin McCain, “Say anything, save everything/ If we say nothing this love will die.”
Who can you reach out to today just to check in?