I’ve always had a heart for Valentine’s Day! I remember with a big smile the excitement building the week leading up to February 14th each year. Afternoons were filled with Valentine preparation. First there was the official Valentine BOX. Before gift bags, back in my elementary era, shoeboxes with a hole cut in the top were the thing. I’d spend hours decorating mine with construction paper hearts plus lots of glue and glitter! (Bless my mom’s patient soul for putting up with my creative messes.) Next came the Valentine CARDS. When we purchased cards from the store, I’d make sure to select just the right ones for my teacher, for the “cool” kids, and of course certain ones were definitely NOT best for boys! Whether they were store bought or homemade, silly or serious, each Valentine sent a similar message ~ You are special. You are loved. What a simple but powerful message to celebrate one day each year.

At our annual school party, we took turns delivering our Valentines to our classmates. Now I’ll be honest, in grade school I was the awkward, kinda “chunky,” smart girl who felt more at home in music or art class than on the playground. Suffice it to say, I definitely didn’t receive any of the “cool” cards. Nor did I get the “most” cards. Many years I’d leave my school on Valentine’s Day with my glitter box half full.

Life can be like that. Far more brutal than an elementary Valentine’s party, it seems that many days my momma’s heart and the hearts of my daughters are far from full or healthy. Happy Heart Day seems like a fleeting childhood celebration.

In recent years, the American Heart Association has wisely built upon the Valentines season by deeming February as Women’s Heart Health month. “Go Red for Women” campaign is a month designed to increase women’s heart health awareness and improve the lives of women. Like the American Heart Association, God agrees. The HEARTS of women, young and old, matter. Why? Because no woman can live without her heart. And yes, heart health can greatly determine the quality of each woman’s life!

Heart of Womanhood Ministry has a similar initiative. We believe the heart is, well, the heart of THE matter. God’s Word beats this truth loud and clear. Almost 900 times the Bible stresses God’s divine heart initiative. He encourages us to: guard and grow our hearts, wait and worship in our hearts, seek and serve with our hearts, love and lead from our hearts. Why does God care so much for the hearts of His women? Because God knows that the heart is who we really are.

Take a moment, right now. Set down your phone and point to your sweet little self. Go ahead. Do it!

Where did you place your fingertip? Without hesitation, you pointed to your HEART! Why? Perhaps it’s a holy reflex pointing us to God’s point of view.

Oswald Chambers defines “heart” in this beautifully pointed way, “The use of the Bible term HEART is best understood by simply saying “ME”. It puts back together all the psychological, scientific, and theological dissections we’ve been handed by the modern era and gives us back our WHOLE selves. My HEART is ME. The real ME. The deepest, truest ME.”

Sisters, our world has dissected us to death. We are either trying to live half-hearted or losing heart all together. In Matthew 22 Jesus says that the first and greatest command is to, “Love the Lord your God with ALL YOUR HEART!” Like a strong pulse throughout scripture, God’s heart beats and longs to give us back our WHOLE selves so we can live whole-heartedly!

As His glorious girls, there’s no doubt that God’s target is our hearts. But so is Satan’s. His arrows are aimed at the same bulls-eye. His specialty? Heart attacks.

We have been well educated to discern the signs and symptoms of physical heart attacks: difficulty in breathing, chest pain, nausea, dizziness, etc. But each day, every headline on our news feeds reveals signs and symptoms of epidemic spiritual heart attacks: school shootings, sexual abuse, racial division, political unrest, suicide, divorce.

As a momma, I pray for God as our Great Physician to keep me aware of my own heart health and that of our daughters. I pray for Him to keep my spiritual stethoscope aware of the possible heart murmurs of discouragement, depression, discontentment etc… that are the beginning signs of heart attacks in our own home. Yes, our hearts and homes, our culture and our kids are displaying signs of life-threatening cardiac arrest. In many ways, moms are the first-responders in the lives of our next generation. But unlike the American Heart Association campaign, these heartbreaking spiritual symptoms cannot be treated or cured by wearing red or by increased awareness! We must GO RED with the red blood of Jesus in order to reclaim and restore true heart health for our women~both young and old.

Heart of Womanhood Ministry is about equipping and encouraging us as moms to actively engage in battle for the HEARTS of our next generation.

“For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose HEARTS are WHOLLY committed to Him.” 2 Chronicles 16:9

This kind of encouragement can only be found in the truth of God’s Word. That’s why our focus is on encouraging moms and daughters to join together in intergenerational Bible study.

The word ENCOURAGE is truly powerful. Its root in Latin is the word COR which means…HEART! Yes, as moms, God wants to equip us with scripture to enCOURage our daughters. To put courage back into their hearts! He wants women with strong CORE. Strong heart muscles.

So, this Valentine’s season, I want to encourage YOU to,

“Wait for and confidently expect the Lord; Be strong and let your HEART take courage; Yes, wait for and confidently expect the Lord.” Psalms 27:14.

As you seek holy heart health for yourself, God will give you a daily dose of encouragement for those He has entrusted to your care. The results? Happy Heart Days. I am living proof.

Yes, as a young girl, at our annual school party, I definitely didn’t receive any of the “cool” cards. Nor did I get the “most” cards. Many years I’d leave my classroom on Valentine’s Day with my glitter box half full. BUT my momma had taught me THE secret! You see, she taught me that God’s Word is His love letter to me~His Valentine to my soul. And although my “glitter box” would never be filled with Valentine’s from my classmates, each February 14th I could walk into school with a smile on my face because my heart was fully confident that I was loved by Jesus and my parents. What a gift to go to school with my glitter box (my heart) already full. Any cards I got from my classmates would simply add an extra sweet sparkle to the annual celebration. So, whether you’re a momma or a daughter, as Jesus’ Valentine, I encourage YOU to celebrate Happy Heart Day~ not just on February 14th~ but everyday! And our glitter boxes? Well, let’s just say, Jesus will sprinkle His spiritual encouragement everywhere we go!