For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16 NIV)

Today on the Christian calendar is Ash Wednesday, and on the secular calendar, it is Valentine’s day. What an awesome combination love and repentance. Some are finding this difficult because it is the first day of lent and a time to sacrifice, therefore how do we wrestle with dinner, movies, and chocolate over ashes and sacrifice. I believe it is how you look at it. The sacrifice that Christ made is better than any valentine‚Äôs day. No one has sacrificed their life for me that I might have a right to the tree of life and paid the price that I would not die in my daily sins. Repenting is the least we can do to recognize our weaknesses as humans. Every day we should repent and love one another as Christ has loved us. It is not often that both fall on the same day. We have gotten so far removed from sacrificing our time, gifts, and talent for the body of Christ. We do not always enter his gates with thanksgiving and courts with praise, we come into Gods house like it is a chore like washing dishes or doing the laundry. Unfortunately, sometimes it takes tragedy and pain to draw us closer to God who wants us to seek first the kingdom of God. Pain has redeeming qualities; pain has a way of allowing God to get our attention. The gift of eternal life is priceless. The ashes today are symbolic of how much we owe to a loving God that formed us in his image and has blessed us in ways that we see and in ways that we do not see, So, love and repentance are an excellent combination for believers this year. Remain encouraged God’s continual blessings upon you.