September 10, 2020

Brothers and Sisters, (Romans 8:35-39)  Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?  As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.  Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.  For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,  Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. The greatest feeling in the world is to be loved by someone.  Love is the strongest of all emotions and yet it is something that is all too often taken for granted.  When Jahala got diagnosed with cancer 2 years ago this month, our lives were forever changed.  Our lives had always been so busy.  Between our jobs and the church, we were always on the go.  Most days we would see each other in passing, but then all of a sudden, our lives were put on hold.  Nothing else mattered except making sure that she got the best possible care and treatment for the cancer.  I told my supervisor at work and he was so gracious to give me whatever time I needed to be off with Jahala.  During the next 10 months, I spent day and night by her bedside doing my best to care for her and now that I’ve had the time to reflect on those days, I realize how much love we had for each other.  Jahala was a special person (not perfect), but special.  She was the one that God brought into my life and we enjoyed 40 years together.  Now, I wish that I had taken more time to demonstrate my love toward her.  I think we both took each other for granted, but in the end we knew beyond any shadow of a doubt that we loved each other.  Now our love has been separated for a brief period of time, but thank God it is only temporary. In life, we go through times when we feel underappreciated or “unloved”.  Sometimes we feel this way on our job.  We can also have these same feelings in our marriage or by our family.  Sometimes we don’t even love ourselves.  But as I look at our text in Romans 8:35-39, I see a love that far exceeds any love that anyone could ever have.  It’s so good to know that there is absolutely nothing that can separate us from the love of Christ. We all mess up in life and cause others to reevaluate their love toward us.  Many times, people walk away and won’t have anything to do with us anymore.  I see this happening in married couples, with church members and between family members.  But I’m glad I have one who will never leave me nor forsake me no matter what.  This man’s name is Jesus and he loved me so much that he gave himself for me.  (Galatians 2:20)  I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.  Nobody has ever loved me like Jesus and now nothing can separate me from his love. I would like to encourage each of you this morning to never take for granted the love that Jesus has for you and now that you have experienced that love, use it to love one another.  Always remember that nothing can separate you from the love of Christ. 
Bro. Rick

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