Spiritual Practice

A Valentine’s Day Gift

Abigail Scott

My friend Hannah fumbled with her purse, stalling for time as she listened to the cruel words a man was saying to his date. It was Valentine’s Day, and obviously he had met the woman for lunch. But now he was angry and growled at her that her makeup was smeared and she looked terrible. How could she expect him to be seen with her in public? The woman fought back tears as the man stalked away and climbed into his car.

Hannah was stunned, her mouth half open, her eyes riveted on the woman. Then the woman looked up, and their eyes locked in. In an awkward pause, humiliation filled the stranger’s face. She ran out of the restaurant and hurried down the sidewalk.

Compassion filled Hannah’s heart. Seizing the rose she had bought for a friend, Hannah dashed down the sidewalk after the woman and called, “Wait!” “Happy Valentine’s Day,” Hannah whispered, catching her breath.

The tears in the woman’s eyes thanked her more eloquently than words. “You are so beautiful,” she said, smiling as she took the rose.

Hannah wasn’t sure this was true—at least not on the outside; but her compassion had shown a deeper beauty. And it had given her hope that she, too, could be beautiful.

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OFFER GOOD NEWS: This Valentine’s Day, be a messenger of God’s love to those who feel unlovable.

—from devozine (January/February 2007). Copyright © 2006 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.

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