Anyone Can Fall In Love . . . (A Valentine's Day Challenge)

Paula Hendricks 02/01/13
Category: Myself ; 59 comments

If there's anything I've learned after twenty-nine Valentine's Days it's this: Cupid must be one busy, skillful shot, because anyone—with the help of a few hormones—can fall in love. All it takes is a cute face, a nice build, a smile, a kind word . . . and we're goners.

Something else I've noticed is that as easy as it is to fall in love, it's pretty near impossible to love someone else more than yourself. With Valentine's Day just two weeks away, I've been thinking a lot about Romans 12:10:

Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. two girls holding heart

I love how the old King James Version translates that last phrase:

. . . in honour preferring one another (emphasis added).

When you prefer someone else, you consider them more valuable than yourself, your time, and your needs. You highly esteem and respect them.

So I'm asking myself, What if—what if instead of falling in love this month (which anyone can do) I practiced preferring someone else above me?

Starting today, I'm going to focus on one "one another" command from God's Word each day. I'm asking God for opportunities to practice preferring others. Will you join me?

Report back here at the end of the challenge, and I'll let you know how my challenge goes, too.

Ready, set . . . LOVE!

The 2013 Valentine's Day Challenge

February 1: Greet one another (Rom. 16:16; 1 Cor. 16:20). Your first challenge shouldn't be too tough. FYI: In New Testament times, Christians greeted each other with a holy kiss. Obviously that's not how we do things in America today, but you can make someone's day with a friendly smile and hello.

February 2: Comfort one another (1 Thess. 4:18). One of the very best ways to comfort someone who is hurting is with the truth of God's Word. Go ahead; try it.  

February 3: Meet with one another (Heb. 10:25). This one shouldn't be too hard—just head on over to church!   

February 4: Build one another up (Rom. 15:2; 1 Thess. 5:11). Since this is a challenge, I'm going to ask you not to compliment your friend on her hair, skinny jeans, or cool nails, but on her character.  

February 5: Forgive one another (Col. 3:13). "As the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive." His forgiveness toward you is nothing short of lavish. When someone ticks you off today, think about how God has forgiven you and then extend that same forgiveness to them.  

February 6: Bear one another's burdens (Gal. 6:2). No one has ever carried a heavier burden for someone else than Jesus did. He shouldered the crushing weight of our sins on His innocent shoulders. How can you follow His example today?

February 7: Encourage one another (Heb. 10:25). Jesus is coming back soon! The best is yet to come. How can you infuse a friend with courage in her struggle today by reminding her of eternal truths?

February 8: Serve one another (Gal. 5:13). It doesn't get much more practical than this. The sky's the limit!  

February 9: Be kind, tenderhearted, and forgiving toward one another (Eph. 4:32). God has kindly and tenderly forgiven you. Who can you treat with kindness today?

February 10: Welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you (Rom. 15:7). Is there someone feeling left out who you can welcome to your lunch table today?

February 11: Care for one another (1 Cor. 12:25). Who could use a little TLC (Tender Loving Care) today? 

February 12: Minister one to another (1 Pet. 4:10). God didn't give you gifts to show off. Use one of your talents today to encourage someone.  

February 13: Show hospitality to one another (1 Pet. 4:9). Who would be blessed by an invitation to your home? You don't have to have them over for a meal (though that's a great idea). I think I might invite a friend over to roast marshmallows in the fireplace and talk.

February 14: Confess your sins to one another and pray for one another (James 5:16). Rather than asking for prayer for your bum ankle or your sick pet (not that there's anything wrong with that), will you go a little deeper and tell a girlfriend a heart struggle where you need God's help? Remember, this is supposed to be a challenge!  

February 15: You did it! I'm so proud of you. But . . . why stop now? There are fourteen more days in February—just enough time to beat the challenge again.

Comments

HEY, GIRLS! We love hearing from you, but feel limited in the ways we can help. For one thing, we’re not trained counselors. If you’re seeking counsel, we encourage you to talk to your pastor or a godly woman in your life as they’ll know more details and can provide you with ongoing accountability and help. Also, the following comments do not necessarily reflect the views of Revive Our Hearts. We reserve the right to remove comments which might be unhelpful, unsuitable, or inappropriate.

    mickiejoy
    A Good Idea
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 7:47 am
    This challenge looks good. It will definitely get me outside of my comfort zone. (And that's a good thing, though!)

    Blessings as you strive to make wise choices,

    Mikayla
    Steve Cornell
    Love
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 8:19 am
    This is a creative and thoughtful tool. Thank you. I like distinguish "Being in Love" from "Behaving in love." I explain it here: What if I don’t feel love for my spouse? http://thinkpoint.wordpress.com/2012/02/05/what-if-i-dont-feel-love-for-my-spouse/
    Lexi
    Thanks Miss Paula!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 8:22 am
    I love this idea... and I'm totally going to do it!! It will be a challange but I'm sure it will be fun too:D
    Laura
    Challenge Accepted! :D
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 8:48 am
    This looks like a wonderful idea! And By God's grace, I will be able to do each of those each day.
    Michele
    Preferring, not selfish love
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 9:20 am
    Thank you do much for this post! There's this amazing guy that I am really fighting not to like (the reason being at this point in my life I don't think it would be God's plan for me to be dating so soon) so whenever I begin constantly thinking about him, I'll tell myself "I respect him more than that...I don't want to lead him and myself on through my emotions."
    Also there's a friend of mine who I have known forever, but now she is wandering farther and farther from both her parents and God. It's really hard for me to love her at times because she can be negative and snarky at times. But because of your post I think I'm going to stop worrying about the guy, and start preferring my friend over myself. Even if I disagree with her attitude, I want to serve her the way Jesus would have. Please pray for me in this, because I often struggle with controlling my thoughts in this way, in romantic thoughts towards the guy, and judgmental thoughts towards my friend. I know as valentines day approaches things are going to get hard, so please keep me in your prayers!
    Emily
    Love is alive!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 9:28 am
    This is a amazing challenge! I never would have thought about love in this way. Also though for me, I have to remind myself that love is not only saying or doing something for someone else, but really meaning it as well.
    Thanks so much!
    lia
    so cool!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 10:03 am
    I'll take up the challenge. :) and i'll pray for all you other gals doing it too. this is such an awesome idea!
    Vanessa
    awsome challenge
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 10:18 am
    Thanx so much!!! This is a great idea! I am totally in!!! :) I just started following the LYWB blog and already I've been super blessed by it!!! :) I'll be prayin for all you others who are doing this challenge as well!!! :) ~Vanessa
    God's little princess
    Awesome!!!!!!!!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 10:25 am
    This idea is epic!!!!!! I'm so gonna do this!! We can do this ladies!!! :D
    Caitlin
    Re:
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 10:45 am
    I'll definitely be joining you on this challenge! Thanks!
    Lily
    Thanks!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 10:49 am
    Totally in on this challenge!!!
    As for the first part of this challenge, hello everyone!! I've been blessed by what every single one of you has said in the comment form, so thanks!!
    PS today's my birthday, and I'm excited to start this year off with a challenge! (:
    Kaylee S. Smith
    Perfect; I'm In!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 10:50 am
    This is perfectly wonderful! I'm in!

    God Bless and May Much Fruit Come Out Of This For Y'all!

    ~ Kaylee S. Smith

    P.S. I'll check back in after the 15th.
    Kat
    Awesome!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 11:21 am
    I'm in! This will be so cool, thank you for the idea! God bless all of y'all!
    Kat
    Julie
    Praise God
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 11:23 am
    I'm in! Please keep each other accountable!
    hally
    great challenge!!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 11:41 am
    this is a wonderful challenge!! i will toatally try to do this !!!!
    Good Challenge
    Re:
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 12:09 pm
    Thank-you! What a wonderful challenge!
    I truly appreciate this! I have never really thought about what is needed in a relationship until now. So, I am going to really work on this. Even if I have an interest in someone, or vice-versa, it's more about serving them. This is truly a challenge and something to grasp!

    Thank-you!
    Your-sister-in-Christ
    kaetlyn
    ready, set, love!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 12:22 pm
    I'm really excited (but nervous) to do this. I have a lot of friends, but none of them come to me for help, and how am I supposed to ask somebody if they're okay, without making it look weird? Note that a bunch of my friends are guys. :)
    Paula Hendricks
    Happy Birthday, Lily!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 12:26 pm
    What a great way to start a new year--focusing on loving others. You go, girl!

    And to all the rest of you . . . you made my day. Thanks for joining me!
    Marissa
    I'm all in!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 1:05 pm
    Hey gals, I want to share something with you quickly. I know I've been vague about it but I was in a residential treatment facility in the state next to mine. And now I'm giving back to my community, and I am looking to donate shampoo, conditioner, makeup, and any other cute little things to these ten girls that live in the residential in my town. I would like some prayer in this because I am saving for a car, but somehow I know this is more important. My pastor spoke on how we should trust God with our money and give it all to him and He challenges our faith through this. But I know things will work out! Our God is amazing and He is so good! I want to share his love with these girls!! They need it, just like we need Him. :)

    Your sister,
    Marissa
    Marissa
    P.S.
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 1:07 pm
    I forgot to add that the girls from my small group are helping me! Oops! So if y'all could pray for them too that would be greatly appreciated. :)
    Brittany
    Re:
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 1:34 pm
    This post is a great idea. I think I'll give it a try.
    Louise
    I'm in
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 2:16 pm
    This is such a good idea and I love following things like this so I am definatley doing it :) thanks for the post
    Christina
    RE:Post
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 2:44 pm
    I'm up for the Challenge!:)

    Happy Birthday Lily!
    Hannah
    I'm in!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 3:45 pm
    This is such a great challenge. I look forward to doing this each day along with all of the other girls. Are you ready, get set, let's LOVE!!! :D
    Ashlee
    Awesome!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 4:38 pm
    Thanks so much for sharing this great idea! I printed it out and can't wait to read the verses each morning and do it!
    Sarah, with the LYWB team
    @Marissa...
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 5:47 pm
    I have loved praying for you and your small group, sweet girl. God is indeed teaching you and training you in righteousness--and the neat thing is that you are responding! :-) Yes, indeed, He is a great and gracious God! Keep looking to Him and following Him! And loving Him! Proud of you!
    Sarah, with the LYWB team
    @Lily...
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 5:49 pm
    I add my Happy Birthday to Paula's! HAPPY BIRTHDAY! :-)
    Kingsdaughter
    GREAT
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 6:39 pm
    I love this challenge and will do it, thats a great idea
    Natalie
    I'm in!
    on Friday, February 1, 2013 at 9:10 pm
    also, I sent it to some of my friends. Hope they'll join us!
    stela
    :)
    on Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 11:05 am
    great :)
    anonymous
    Re:
    on Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 11:30 am
    So, I have been trying to work on this kind of thing for a while now. I had been doing pretty well for a few weeks. Then I interacted with some new people, and one was constantly insulting my friends and myself for a biblical lifestyle and opinions. I stood for it for awhile, but then I just lost it. I got angry and was disrespectful, starting a loud angry argument. I didn't personally insult this person too much though. But this person pretty much won the argument (I can see I need to brush up on apologetics). I apologized as humbly as I could, a while later, but this person kind of blew it off. What should I do now?
    Lynn
    Awesome challenge!!!!
    on Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 4:36 pm
    I am totally in for this challenge.... Thanks so much for putting this challenge out there :) with God's grace, I hope to finish this and be closer to Him when I'm finished!!

    Thanks again!
    Cara
    For anonymous
    on Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 7:41 pm
    First off I want to say that you are very strong for standing up for your friends and your beleifs. It is only natural to get angry after a while and negative comments toward you can really wear you down. But just becuase it is natural doesn't make it right however if you apologized there is nothing more to do apart from pray that god will fix your relationship with that person and that god might work in that persons heart. What you can do though is show love to them even if they hate you back, NEVER give up on love, be friendly and humble and mabye after a little while if the person is still annoyed try to talk quietly with them about what you beleive and don't forget to ask about what they beleive to and why they find your beliefs wrong. If that doesn't work keep on praying and praying and don't let it get to you, put it all in gods hands, I will pray for you and this person
    Yours in Christ,
    Cara <3
    oh and remember to brush up on apologetics before you talk to them :) it always helps to know what you are talking about and if you do talk to them, don't loose your cool, if you are about to pray and count to five before you say your next words
    I hope things work out for you, and I hope this makes sense becuase I am kinda new at this :)
    anonymous
    anonymous again
    on Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 9:42 pm
    I do need prayer...I am outspoken and need to learn to be more respectful and less headstrong in my words. And that person needs prayer, as well.
    But the worst part is that I will never in all probability see this person again. We were in a week-long activity together.
    This person had a hardened heart to the gospel; I don't think I could plausibly have shared with them before they interrupted or left. But, I feel like I put a bad name on all Christians for them. I have prayed about it and still feel very remorseful and guilty.
    Coleen Mae Sararaña
    Re:
    on Sunday, February 3, 2013 at 7:53 am
    I just would like to ask if is it okay to celebrate valentines day as a christian?Because as what i had learned, its a kind of idolatry more like paganism..thanks.God bless!
    Jessi
    Re:
    on Sunday, February 3, 2013 at 3:29 pm
    Yes! I'm down for some love shennanigans! :D
    Chocolate
    ready...set... LOVE
    on Sunday, February 3, 2013 at 5:37 pm
    Yes, I'm in...even if I am a bit late =)
    Rachel
    Off Topic Problem
    on Sunday, February 3, 2013 at 6:06 pm
    Hey guys, this is really off-topic, but I'm having a problem with insecurity. I really would like to share with others what God's doing in my life, and glorify God in every way that I can, but it seems so hard sometimes. Maybe the insecure feelings I'm having are the result of me having idols in my life, and I say that because it seems like when we aren't getting confidence through Christ, and are turning to other things, we end up feeling really insecure. I know this is gonna sound weird, but for me, sometimes I'm scared of being shy. That's probably because I make being outgoing an idol in my life. I know I shouldn't value being outgoing THAT much, but it really sucks, because I don't know why I can't just do it like any other person. I just feel so stuck, and at the same time like this problem isn't something that should faze me.
    lost
    question
    on Sunday, February 3, 2013 at 9:08 pm
    So . . . I never would have described myself as "boy-crazy" but I'm starting to wonder if that label would fit me. See, I'm 20, in college, and I'm really starting to feel lonely--I spend time with God on a regular basis, but lately it feels like it isn't enough. There is this one guy I really like, but he tends to not date at all. He has nothing against dating, just "hasn't found the right girl". He's a great christian guy, great with kids, the most handsome guy I've ever seen, sings, involved in church etc. My friends and family think we would be great together. How do I get him to notice me? Or should I even try? How should I handle this? My parents are OK with me dating, etc. It isn't that. I just don't know what to do. Sorry this is kind of long . . .
    RK
    This is really great
    on Monday, February 4, 2013 at 11:55 am
    Thanks for this .. it is such a good thing to do. I'll take this challenge :)
    C.Jazzy101
    Help!
    on Monday, February 4, 2013 at 12:20 pm
    Hi!

    Thank-you for this challenge!
    I do have a question, this is off topic as well.

    I was recently reconnected with an old family friend. We started chit-chatting because we had a similar interest. We have only chatted for a small time.

    But one of the things I really want to know is if He is a believer. I think he is, I want to ask but I'm not sure when it's appropriate. My family knows him.

    They say he isn't, but it sounds like he is. What do you recommend that I do? I have never really gotten to know a guy wheteher a believer or not not based on his looks.

    We have more in common, and I don't want to get wrapped up in the whole "Valentines Day thing," I refuse to date someone whose not a believer.

    Then he started to ask me questions. What do you recommend that I do.
    I could use wisdom and prayers. He likes a lot of what I like.

    HELP!
    Carrie, with the LYWB team
    @Rachel
    on Monday, February 4, 2013 at 1:42 pm
    I love your desire to share with others what Jesus is doing in your life, Rachel. Whether we struggle with tendencies of being shy and introverted or outgoing and extroverted the real battle is to think less of ourselves and more of Jesus.
    I think you’ll appreciate Nancy DeMoss’ insights regarding this battle:
    “If you hear someone dominating a conversation, it’s pretty easy to say, “They’re arrogant.” But do you know that excessive shyness can also be an evidence of pride?
    Most people assume I’m an outgoing person. But the truth is, when I get into a crowd of people I don’t know, it’s hard for me to start conversations. But when my fear or self-consciousness keeps me from reaching out to other people, I’m being self-centered, proud.
    Starting a conversation and showing interest in others can be an expression of genuine love. So whether we are an introvert or an extrovert, we can both have trouble with being proud in our own way. But when we’re filled with God’s power and motivated by love, we’ll be able to reach out to others in a way that makes them feel appreciated.”
    Praying Jesus will increasingly become the center of your thoughts and actions, friend.
    Carrie, with the LYWB team
    @ Coleen Mae Sararana
    on Monday, February 4, 2013 at 2:16 pm
    You’ll find some great insights and creative ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day here: http://www.liesyoungwomenbelieve.com/index.php?id=898 and
    http://www.liesyoungwomenbelieve.com/index.php?id=670.
    Carrie, with the LYWB team
    @ Michele
    on Monday, February 4, 2013 at 3:17 pm
    Praying today that you will have a Philippians 2 attitude, friend; that you would be filled with the humility and selflessness of Christ having a heart that looks for ways to share the love of Christ with others.
    Lorree, with the LYWB team
    @ anonymous
    on Monday, February 4, 2013 at 4:09 pm
    You are right where you need to be my friend. You recognize that you blew it and you sought this person’s forgiveness. You did the right thing. It is now in her court to choose to forgive you or not. I encourage you to not continue to beat yourself up for this but to remind yourself that you are forgiven (1 Jn. 1:9). God does not hold you in condemnation for what you did (Rom. 8:1). Condemnation is from our enemy. God wants to use this situation to conform you to the image of His Son (Rom. 8:29) and it sounds like you have already learned some valuable lessons from the exchange. Although you may never see her again, you can pray for her and ask God to soften her heart and bring friends into her life who will continue to show her Christ and challenge her beliefs. Praying for this girl and for you right now, my friend!
    Lorree, with the LYWB team
    @ kaetlyn
    on Monday, February 4, 2013 at 4:30 pm
    I’m thankful for your heart, Kaetlyn. Even if your friends aren’t coming to you for advice, I encourage you to pray and ask God to let you hear the needs of your friends. As you begin to listen to those talking around you, He will enable you to hear needs. You can express your concern any way He leads – by simply praying for them or even verbally, a written note, text or however the Lord leads. What a wonderful way to minister to those you care for!
    Rachel
    @Carrie
    on Monday, February 4, 2013 at 7:00 pm
    Thank you so much! I've never really thought about it that way. For awhile, being outgoing's been something that I've been pretty self conscious about, even around my older (25ish) Christian friends. What you're saying is really true though, so thanks again, girl. :)
    Mattea
    Re:
    on Tuesday, February 5, 2013 at 9:18 am
    This is an awesome challenge and I am enjoying following God's word every day!!! :)
    Sarah
    Feb. 5th - forgive
    on Tuesday, February 5, 2013 at 10:12 am
    I just so happens that between yesterday and today I've been getting put through the ringer by an elderly woman I know. The perfect opportunity to practice forgiveness, I think, especially when it's not being asked for (that is when it's hardest!). Hm, coincidence? I think not...
    Sarah, with the LYWB team
    @C.Jazzy101...
    on Tuesday, February 5, 2013 at 4:32 pm
    If your family says he is not a believer, and you are having to guess if he is, then he most likely is not. Or at least not a dedicated Christian. No reason to trouble your mind over it--accept it that this is not someone for you to date.
    Thank-you Sarah
    @ Sarah
    on Tuesday, February 5, 2013 at 5:06 pm
    Thank-you Sarah for the advice, I greatly appreciate it.

    Good point. Thank-you, I don't want to blow him off, but I'll continue to take that wisdom. I will not date a non believer.
    Lorree, with the LYWB team
    @ lost
    on Tuesday, February 5, 2013 at 5:10 pm
    I would encourage you to not try to get him to notice you, my friend, but wait for him to make the first move. As you continue to spend time with the Lord and apply His Word to your daily life in ministry and serving others, you can trust that if this guy is the one the Lord has for you, he will notice you. It sounds as if his heart is in the right place and he is probably waiting for God’s direction. Pray for him as a brother in Christ. As you serve the Lord faithfully, your heart is also in the right place. You are putting His kingdom first and God promises to take care of everything else (Matt. 6:33).
    Livy98
    Gonna give this a shot
    on Wednesday, February 6, 2013 at 2:40 pm
    I think that my drama girlfriends and I are going to make encouragement cards to give out anonymously to other girls. My BFF had this amazing idea. love you Hannah;)
    Taylor
    response to Livy98
    on Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 2:40 pm
    I think that's a great idea Livy98!I think I'm going to try it also. Our church is mostly elderly people, and it would be super fun for my friend (who happens to be very creative and also the pastors wife) to do this together, and send them to the people in our church. Thanks for the fabulous idea!
    Grow in Grace,
    Taylor
    C
    Re:
    on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 at 5:55 am
    Awesome! Thank you so much!
    anonymous
    Re:
    on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 at 8:46 pm
    I'm totally in for the challenge. I got an idea similar to it a few days ago:)
    Emily
    Yay!
    on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 at 11:55 pm
    This is so great I'm gonna start tomorrow! :) I'm super excited!! Question: how are we to bear someone's burdens? Like help them with their problem? I'm confused on how to do that..
    Thanks! I'm so excited to start tomorrow! :)
    Sarah, with the LYWB team
    @Emily...
    on Thursday, February 14, 2013 at 10:56 am
    Yay! We love having you on this journey with us! Whenever you know someone is hurting--a nice touch--holding their hand, putting your hand on their arm or shoulder--is very comforting. Whenever someone is sad, say a nice word--simply "I'm sorry" or "I pray God will help you" or "I am your friend"--will do. Whenever you know others are talking about someone that did something wrong--stand up for them and give them grace. Whenever someone feels the guilt of sin--write out 1 John 1:9 and give it to them with a nice smile. Whenever someone is overwhelmed by their load of things to do--bring them a soft drink or favorite snack to encourage them. Whenever one of your friends is having trouble at home--ask your parents if he/she can come over for dinner to talk with your parents about getting along. To bear someone's burden, extend yourself into their life in some way, to let them know you care and that you are praying for them. Then do it! :-) Bless you for caring, Emily!
    lia
    sooo
    on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 12:31 pm
    so, we're done the first half of the month...how did it go for you gals so far? for me it was kinda hard knowing how to carry it out cuz of being homeschooled and not being around ppl other than my family most days. but thanks to texting i still found a way to do some of the things like greeting someone etc. even tho i couldn't say hi in person it's not too hard to send a cheery or encouraging text to someone or to use that to let them know you care. now gearing up for the last half! :)
    cheers,
    lia

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