When you lead a small group of freshman guys there’s no telling where the conversation is going to go. It could be serious and deep and maybe even intellectual one second and then one person says one word and we end up talking about math class and how our guys hate linear equations and graphic and all of that stuff. That’s just the way it is with those guys.

Last night, while doing our “high-lows,” I said that my high of the week was seeing Nicole since I hadn’t been able to see her in a month. I thought I’d just say that, get the sarcastic “awww” from the guys, and then move on to my low of the week. Nope. That’s not how these guys work. From the corner of the room comes, “When are you going to propose to her?”

We probably spent ten minutes talking about that. They gave me ideas and tried to guess what I had been thinking of doing and when and all of that stuff. I never thought 14-15 year old guys would be acting like 14-15 year old girls when it came to that type of stuff but it was really cool to be around.

As I was driving home from group, I started thinking about them asking that question and how today is Valentine’s Day and all of that stuff. Because I’m cheesy and cliche’d, I started thinking about how I love those guys and I love Nicole.

Valentine’s Day is supposed to be all about love. It’s way too commercialized and people put the emphasis on the wrong things but at the end of the day, Valentine’s Day is a cool time to step back and look at what you love and why you love it. With that being said, here’s my list:

1) God – Yeah, I’m starting here. Above and beyond any other type of love is my love of God. There are times when I don’t really feel like loving God and would honestly like to do things that were completely unloving towards God, but he constantly reminds me of how much he loves me which reminds me of how much I love him.

2) Nicole – I know this is cheesy but this is my one day of the year to be cheesy. Nicole’s not perfect. I know that. She knows that. I’m not perfect either. However, given that we’re two completely unperfect people, we work together almost perfectly. We butt heads and argue and all of those things, but it’s so much fun to be around her and I wouldn’t trade her for anything. I don’t know when or where or how I’ll propose yet but I can’t wait until I get the chance to do that.

3) My guys – The only thing that I wish I could change about my group of freshmen is that I was 14 again and could have had them as my friends in high school. I’ve got a great group of guys. They’re stupid and crazy and funny and they all do dumb things, but they all have great hearts and they all want to be better Christians. At the end of the day, through any screw up and immature thing they do, that’s the thing that defines them and makes them awesome.

4) My family – I wouldn’t be where I am today without my parents and my brother and sister. It sucks being so far away from them and not getting to see them much but I know that they’re never more than a phone call away. My brother’s still one of my best friends and I laugh at/with him multiple times throughout the week.

5) My job – I don’t always like every little piece of my job, but I’ve never felt more comfortable in my own skin than I have in this job. I have constant reminders that God made me for exactly this. Last night I got into a slap fest with a sophomore and laughed my butt off. I get to hang out with kids, teach, and create an environment where people can come and learn about God. For me, that’s pretty much perfect.

Those are only five things that I love. I’m sure there are more and I could spend hours writing them up but I’ll stop there.

Instead of focusing solely on the dating/spouse type of love today, take a second to think about all of the other things that you love.

Instead of complaining that you’re single, be thankful for the other relationships you’re in love with.

Instead of embracing being alone today, take some time and spend it with the God that never leaves you.

Today is about love. We know love because God showed us love.

And personally, that’s enough to eat some overpriced chocolate.