Loving God First - thoughts for Valentine's day

Submitted by mfitch on February 13, 2009 - 04:50. ::

It’s Valentine’s week, so students will be getting earfuls and eyefuls of input about love, romance, sex, and even heartbreak, depending on what voices they’re tuning in.
Corporate culture will want them to buy something to express their affection to someone. Pop music will push them to feel romantically about someone or to wallow in despair about having no one to be romantic with.
Peers and other media may join forces to urge them to celebrate the day with acts of physical affection and emotional commitment. The day can even be used as an invitation to indulge an affection for porn.
Hopefully, the messages coming from you, your church, and their Christian friends will be more positive. We’re encouraging you to use Valentine’s week as an opportunity to talk with your student about his or her affections—specifically affection for God.
We’re basing the following talking points (as well as this week’s daily prayers) on James 4:4-10. You might want to read through it to prepare yourself for any teachable moments that pop up this week.
Talking Points:

  • How do you feel about Valentine’s Day this year?
  • [If your student is in a relationship or dating now, consider asking these next 4 questions.]

  • Are you planning to do anything special or romantic with someone?
  • If it’s not too personal, can I ask how excited you feel about your boyfriend/girlfriend on a scale from 1 to 10?
  • Do you put any limits on your emotion towards a boyfriend or girlfriend? What would be the risks of just letting your emotions go?
  • What are things people can do to make sure they keep their love for God first even in a relationship with a boyfriend or girlfriend?
  • If you’re not doing anything Valentines-y this year, does that bother you? Do you wish that you were?
  • Who would you say are the 3 friends you feel closest to right now?
  • How would you say your feelings for God compare with your feelings for your boyfriend/girlfriend or your other friends?
  • Do you think God cares how He ranks in the list of people or things you love? (See James 4:4-5.)
  • Do you think it’s a problem to care too much about getting what you want out of life? Can you get too emotionally attached to serving yourself? What would that look like? (See James 1:1-5.)
  • What would it look like if God was absolutely the most important person or thing in someone’s heart? How would that change the way someone lives every day?
  • What does is mean to you to try to get close to God emotionally? (James 4:8)
  • How should we feel emotionally about our sin? Should sin make us sad? Why? (James 4:9)
  • What does it mean to you to be humble before God? (James 4:10) How is that different from being proud in a relationship with God?