February 07, 2014

Your Secret Admirer– by Ramona Heikel

I love the tradition of giving Valentines, and was delighted in elementary school when we celebrated Valentine’s Day. What a sweet way of confirming your special friendship and love to particular people in your class. It was so exciting to know that a classmate liked you well enough to make you a red construction-paper heart—maybe even adding a white lace doily—with their handwritten message on the back. Of course, since it was heartbreaking for some students to receive fewer cards than most (or no cards), compassionate teachers started requiring that you gave a Valentine to everyone. But even then, you could reserve your biggest or best Valentine for your favorite friends.

Then came the idea of signing the card as “Your Secret Admirer”. Ooh, how exciting! If someone didn’t want to sign their name, they surely must have extra-strong feelings of love that went beyond friendship. I remember how disappointed I was when Bruce, a boy I had a crush on, signed his name “From Bruce” on his valentine to me. Don’t get me wrong, I was glad to get an unforced store-bought card from him, because at least he considered me one of his many friends. But if I’d gotten a card from a Secret Admirer, I would have hoped that it had been from Bruce, and been thrilled at the possibility that I was significant to him.

Lately I have been noticing in the Old Testament how deep and constant God’s love is for the nation of Israel, no matter how often they ignore and reject him. I am reminded that there was a time that I wasn’t aware of God or his love. I was fifteen when I heard the message that God loved me. Before that, I believed that God loved “the world” as one big round object, with all of our faces blurred, and him not knowing or caring what our names were. This new revelation, that the far away creator of the universe knew me, and wanted me to know him personally, changed everything.

As I got older I began to see how even before I was aware of him, he was giving me gifts, Valentines signed “Your Secret Admirer”. One example of his gifts is my best friend, who I got to know in fourth grade. From then on, she has been my constant, loyal friend, and I now realize she was also my assurance that I was loved, and lovable through many confusing, bleak years. It wasn’t until tenth grade that we both heard the gospel at a high school Campus Life meeting and put our faith in Jesus. Yet during all those previous years, God was giving us little Valentine reminders of his desire to walk with us.

You have a secret admirer, too. And if he’s not so secret and you already know who he is, do you realize that he is your admirer, your friend who loves you constantly? Or do you feel, like I did, that you’re just a nameless, faceless, insignificant part of a big world that God loves? Or that his favorite hobby is catching you failing and sinning? Consider how God spoke about his admiration of Job in Job 1:8; think about the individualized “whoever” in John 3:16; look at his longing to always be with us wherever he is, in John 14:1-3; and read the scriptures that talk about his love, how he first loved us, in 1 John 4:7-19.

(These are Valentines from Bruce and another friend Katie from my grade school scrapbook.)

Posted by Ramona



  1. I'm smiling, Ramona, because your blog warmed the cockles, or innermost part, of my heart." How wonderful that you and your friend discovered during your teens that you were important to God in a personal way. If God's eye is on the sparrow, he will surely watch over each of us.

    And now you are able to tell and write about God's love for each and every person.

  2. Best friend's are truly a gift from God.
    Thanks for sharing wonderful memories, Ramona.

  3. I enjoyed your Valentine's posting. I used to love those Valentine's Day parties at school and all the fun of selecting the 'perfect' card for certain people. Our experiences are similar.

    And...I'll never forget the
    time in my life when I realized that God loved me, not just as one of the 'nameless' bunch
    in the whole world, but for me myself, individually Brenda. It's a precious remembrance.

    Thanks, Ramona!

  4. Thank you Ramona, for the memories. I love those old-fashioned valentines and it brings back memories of school-yard dreams! And what a blessing to know that God loves each of us by name. It's so awesome!

    Pam Mytroen

  5. What sweet comments, bless your hearts! And Happy Valentine's Day love to all :)


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