Valentine’s Day often brings to mind big romantic gestures, expensive gifts, and picture-perfect selfies. But beyond the surface of chocolates and flowers, there’s a more important truth – one that many couples may miss in the hustle and bustle of the celebration.  

For all students who are dating, engaged or married I would like to share one thought about what truly matters in relationships: authenticity. 

You’ve probably heard of the expression, “Keep it real.” That saying exists because nobody likes a phony. And when it comes to relationships, authenticity is an essential part of the foundation for solid and enduring partnerships.  

Keeping it real is about being vulnerable and transparent with one another, even when it’s uncomfortable or challenging.  

In a world that often values touch-ups, cover-ups, and superficiality over genuine connection, embracing authenticity in our relationships is more crucial than ever. 

So, what does it mean to embrace authenticity over Valentine’s Day illusions?  

It’s about saying no to feeling like you have to do things a certain way because everyone else does. Instead, it’s about appreciating the things that make your relationships different and unique; it’s about celebrating the little things, the uniqueness that makes you who you are, flaws, and all because those are the things that make your relationships truly unique and meaningful. 

Embracing authenticity also means being honest with yourself and your partner about your needs and desires. It’s about courageously speaking the truth and listening with an open heart, even when it’s difficult.  

When you make honesty and openness important in your relationship, you open the doors to deeper intimacy, trust, and connection. 

Finally, embracing authenticity also includes a willingness to continually grow and deepen your faith together. One of the best ways to do this is to hold hands with your partner and pray together for one minute (often). 

Here are three reasons why your spouse may not want to pray with you. 

So, this Valentine’s Day, dare to step away from the pressure of perfection in your relationship and instead find enjoyment in the genuine moments shared with your partner. Instead of striving for Instagram-worthy moments or extravagant displays of affection, “keep it real” and cherish the authenticity that binds you closer than any grand gesture ever could. 

Although the word, authenticity is not mentioned in the Bible, the principles of sincerity, truthfulness, and integrity are consistently found in its teachings. Enjoy a few Bible verses below: 

  1. “Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor, for we are all members of one body.” Ephesians 4:25 (NIV), it says, 
  1. “But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.” – John 16:13 (NIV) 
  1. “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'” – John 14:6 (NIV) 
  1. “The truthful lip shall be established forever, but a lying tongue is but for a moment.” – Proverbs 12:19 (NKJV) 
  1. “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” – Philippians 4:8 (NIV) 
  1. “Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices.” – Colossians 3:9 (NIV) 
  1. “The Lord detests lying lips, but he delights in people who are trustworthy.” – Proverbs 12:22 (NIV) 
  1. “The fear of the Lord is pure, enduring forever. The decrees of the Lord are firm, and all of them are righteous.” – Psalm 19:9 (NIV) 
  1. “A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies.” – Proverbs 31:10 (NIV) 
  1. “In the same way, husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.” – Ephesians 5:28 (NIV) 
  1. “Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous.” – Hebrews 13:4 (ESV) 

I welcome your comments.