The teacher in me jumps to imagine this in a classroom setting. Jesus is desperate to make sure his students get what he has been trying to teach them of God’s Love: “and how many baskets did we have left? Come on you know this…” “Twellllllve.”

As in the Gospel times, we live in a complex world where it’s hard to differentiate between God’s call and the corrupting leaven of Herod or the Pharisees. Valentine’s Day, like other holidays, can get a bad reputation because there’s a lot of consumerism that encroaches on its special meaning so that it’s hard to authentically celebrate it as a day of sharing love. At times like this, it’s important that we, rather than frustrate ourselves or engage in specious reasoning (as the disciples did), keep it simple and get back to basics: that God is Love.

A Question: How can I simply express God’s Love to someone today?

—Chia-Yang Kao, S.J., a Jesuit scholastic of the Maryland province, is currently studying philosophy at Loyola University Chicago.