The origin of this story isn't very romantic -- at least not in the traditional sense. St. Valentine was a Roman Priest at a time when there was an emperor named Claudius.
Claudius persecuted the church and also had an edict that prohibited the marriage of young people. He thought unmarried soldiers fought better than married soldiers, because married soldiers might be afraid of what would happen to their wives or families if they died.
While in prison one of the men who was to judge Valentine was a man called Asterius, whose daughter was blind. Seeing that Valentine was a man of learning, he asked whether his daughter, Julia, might be brought to Valentine for lessons. One day, after spending some time with her, he prayed with her and healed the young girl with such astonishing effect that Asterius himself became Christian as a result. Valentine was eventually sentenced to a three-part execution of beating, stoning, and finally decapitation all because of his stand for Christian marriage.
The story goes that on the eve of his death, Valentine wrote a last note to Julia urging her to stay close to God. He signed it, "From your Valentine." With those three words he has inspired romance that continues today. His sentence was carried out the next day, February 14, 270 A.D.
To everyone who longs for that deep connection, that unconditional love in a marriage or a relationship, you must remember that God's love needs to be in your heart first. The same love that caused Jesus to lay his life down for the church, the love that inspired Valentine to defy an emperor--a love so true and so deep that if a time comes where you may have to lay your life on the line for what you believe in then, like Valentine, with God in your heart and the power of the Holy Spirit you can do it -- even to the point of death.
Happy Valentine's Day!
Post by Julian Rocha
j2i Speaker & Leader
Julian is a husband and father. He is married to his love, Leah. They have three children, Jordan (20), Leslie (18), and Brookes (12). He is currently self-employed. He works as a freelancer in broadcast television and has traveled across the U.S. helping ministries and corporations.