Mary Mortenson, Pamela Deacon-Joyner, Prison Congregations of America (1)
My Special Valentine
Feb 05, 2017
By Mary Mortenson, Executive Director, Prison Congregations of America
When I was in grade school, in anticipation of the annual Valentine’s Day party, we had to design and decorate a box for the valentines we would get. Some of the boxes were beautiful. Mine were not. I was never very artistic, and so my effort produced a crepe paper covered shoebox with a slot cut in the cover and a few hearts stuck on it. Not beautiful, not unique. The really exciting part of the whole Valentine’s Day experience was that it was a rule that everyone in the class had to give everyone else a valentine. We couldn’t pick and choose who was worthy. Thus, even plain girls like me got a valentine from the cutest boy in class!
In looking back, I realize that those were Gospel times. Just like those wise grade school teachers in Estelline, South Dakota, God knows that everyone deserves God’s love. As children of God, we don’t get to pick and chose who is worthy. And those boxes – those vessels that hold the valentine blessings – well they come in all shapes and sizes. Some are beautiful and some are not, but regardless, they should each be able hold the love they seek.
I am so blessed to work with a population that is all too often seen as unlovely and unlovable. I get to join others in telling them that there is a God who thinks they are beautiful and loves them just the way they are, just where they are today. I think that’s a pretty great Valentine’s blessing for all of us, don’t you?
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