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The Art of Love - 7

Breaking Out of Prison

He was locked in prison for standing up for his beliefs—that marriage is a sacred bond between a man and woman, and should never be banned or made illegal by the courts of human flesh. St. Valentine, sparked with righteous indignation against the Roman emperor’s decree that no one should marry, so that single men could be enlisted in his military campaign, refused to abandon God’s covenant of love for humanity—the blessing of marriage between a man and woman: Therefore, shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh (Genesis 2:24; Matthew 19:5). So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, let not man separate (Matthew 19:6). As a man of God, Valentine of Terni continued joining couples who desired to consummate their love relationship in God’s ordained institution of marriage.

When you come into loving yourself, your soul can guide you into doing what is right. A woman in love with herself will not settle for a man who cannot commit only to her and in the bond of marriage. Fornication is engaging in a sexual relationship without any commitment of staying together forever. Adultery is fornication with a married person who, thereby, is breaking their promise of staying faithful to their spouse. A man who loves himself will express his love for the woman he desires by not channeling his passion into lust for sexual pleasure, but rather will prepare to bring her before the throne of God and seek His will. God wills that man be joined to a woman in holy matrimony and bear godly children.

Watercolor painting by Robert Schoeller

Life is not perfect; and, at times, relationships you hoped would last forever (‘til death do you part) may not. Change is inevitable, bound to happen, but how you get through the change is driven by the amount of love you have for yourself. A heart can “break” if it has cleaved to a person not divinely right for you. Don’t get bitter and twisted up inside, seeking vengeance on yourself by having more sex to make you feel good, and not rejected.

No, dearly beloved of God, you must BREAK OUT OF THE PRISON of what the world defines as love. You must stop following the patterns of the spirit of fornication and immerse yourself in the pool of clean water—the living water which nurtures the life of your soul so that you can enjoy the miracles of God in abundance. Rejection of Jesus as the Word of God is chipping away at the purity of His marriage covenant with terms like “divorce”, “separation”, “gay rights”. God loves you; and He wants the best for you, but He abhors all sin, or disobedience to His Word (just like any loving parent would). When you reject the will of your Creator, you intentionally lock yourself into a prison of pain which manifests as heartbreak.

We experience heartbreak in our lives because of a relationship gone wrong (or was it right from the start?). You’ve got the concept of agape love from our last conversation. Agape love is the love rooted in 1 Corinthians 13 (especially verses 4 to 8). Live that kind of love first for yourself; then God will bring that person who’s also living that same kind of love into your life to join you together as one. In the meantime, work on becoming your best self so that you can lift up the person you love to the Lord and make a promise to love her or to cherish him forever.

Dear Sister, you are as beautiful as your eyes can carry you. See yourself as a most loving creation of God. He made you to be like a flower gorgeously decorated in holiness in preparation for union with a man strong in faith and courageous enough to love you honorably. When he comes into your life, submit to his love and you will bloom and flourish. It’s not about you finding that right guy or gal. It’s about you waiting on the Lord in prayer for your right lover. He is out there, young woman. She is near, young man. Remove the veil of lust for the physical characteristics and see inside a person’s heart. Not all outward appearance which glitters is gold.

The mistake most of us make is using our eyes of lust to chase after what we ‘think’ is the right person. “She’s packed with it all, man.” “Oo, girl, he’s got the whole thing going on.” These expressions clearly refer to the physical appearance of a lady or gentleman. It is not a sin to be attracted to the opposite sex for that’s what keeps the heart pumping; however, physical attraction cannot be the only measure for a real godly relationship. Yes, he or she should be handsome or beautiful in your eyes, but have you examined what’s going on inside the one you desire? Is he prone to fits of rage that could bounce you off your feet crashing against a wall cracking the tiny bones in your fingers? Does her mouth spew such filthiness and insults so painful that it shocks your whole world rendering you silent for days?

"St. Valentine of Terni, Italy

Dearly beloved, St. Valentine was a Roman priest and a physician who suffered martyrdom during the persecution of Christians by the Roman emperor Claudius II Gothicus in year 270 A.D. He was imprisoned for holding onto his faith in the sanctity, the holiness of love. While in prison, he wrote letters to friends encouraging them to keep the faith entrusted to them no matter what, and subscribed them with “from your Valentine”.

Jesus died for you because He loves you. He is alive, and He still loves you right where you are now. His love is the driving force of the whole universe. When you tap into His love, you will be FREED FROM PRISON, freed from the slavery of fornication and its twisted ideas of honoring 14th February as day of illicit sex with candy-flavored condoms, instead of a day commemorating a life of a Christian who died for the cross as a martyr for Jesus.

A martyr is one who voluntarily suffers death rather than deny their religious beliefs by words or deeds. The term also refers to anyone who sacrifices their life or something of great value for the sake of principle. FREEDOM asks for the sacrifice of your body’s fleshly appetite: “I beseech [plead with] you [all people], by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God . . . and do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God” (Romans 12:1-2).

There are people who believe that by their death, they will be rewarded by a god who never died for them. Christianity is not a mere religion. It is a way of life which even those who profess to be Christian are somehow distorting or compromising nowadays. Pure Christianity is the way of unconditional love which brings a peace beyond human understanding because it comes from spiritual roots. A mind that is consumed by fleshly or carnal roots cannot comprehend the depth, the width, nor the height of God’s love. It is by perfect submission to real love that you get access to life-saving and overflowing joy in your heart.

Ladies, it is by perfect submission to a gentleman’s love that you receive your life-long partner. Gentlemen, it is through your heart to truly love a woman unconditionally that you will wait and take time to get to know her true character; then decide (whether or not) to pledge to support her with your own godly character and substance. Love and submission will bind you together in holy matrimony. This is what Valentine died for. This is how he broke out of prison.


© 2022 by Patience Osei-Anyamesem. All rights reserved. Published by The Light In Me Enterprise. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means—electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or any other—without the prior written permission of the publisher. The only exception is brief quotations in printed reviews or other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law.

Unless otherwise stated, all scripture quotations are from The New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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