I remember back many years ago to a very special time in my life: Feb. 14, 1989. It was Valentine’s Day, and it was the third month that I had been dating a very beautiful, godly lady named Joanne.

Tom Heck, his wife, Joanne, and their two children own and operate a dairy farm in Wisconsin. Ord...

Even though neither one of us were rich financially, we felt we should splurge that day and make it really special. It was special to me already because this was the first time in my life that I had a girlfriend on Valentine’s Day. I bought Joanne a large heart-shaped box of premium chocolates to give to her.

I did the regular farm work that day and then milked the cows that evening in great anticipation of seeing my sweetheart. I dressed up super nice and then drove the 30-some miles to pick up my valentine. When she came to the door, I was stunned. She was absolutely beautiful.

Even though that was 35 years ago, I remember it as though it were yesterday. She was wearing a beautiful cream-colored dress, with cream-colored heels and a sharp red scarf around her neck. After exchanging some greetings and giving her the box of delicious chocolates, we went out to eat at a fine restaurant. Since we had gone after I milked cows, it was pretty late in the evening and the place was virtually empty. We had it all to ourselves except for the cooks and waiters. It looked like I had bought the place out for my special date.

We ordered our special meal and when it arrived, we thanked the Lord for it. We asked Him to bless it and our time together. The lights were turned down way low as we started to eat and visit. We then noticed a short ways away that a previous customer earlier that evening ordered candles for their table. Since the people were long gone and the candles were still burning, I brought them to our table. We dined like a king and queen that evening. I still remember as if it were yesterday, looking into Joanne’s radiant face in the flickering candlelight. I’ve come to realize that God is the author of romance.


We visited long that evening, and then I took her home. Then it happened. Before I left to go home for the night, we kissed each other for the first time. Wow! I am happy to say we kept our relationship pure before God and man. Several months later in August, I had the privilege of marrying my valentine, my soulmate.

Every year on Valentine’s Day, we think back to our first one and celebrate anew the love God has given us for each other. We also let our children know that they are special to us.

This year, I’m planning a couple of special surprises for my sweetheart. They may not both be on Feb. 14, but around there. The big thing is to bless her and to show her my love.

Husbands and wives, love your spouse and treat them special. Splurge on them a little. If you have a good spouse, they are well worth it. You will build memories that will last a lifetime. In the end, you will find as you bless them that you are the one who is blessed the most. I know that is most certainly true for me. I still remember that special candlelight dinner and kiss.