Monday, May 27, 2013
The Stickiness of God's Love
Rom. 8:37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
Rom. 8:38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers,
Rom. 8:39 nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
This is one of the more famous sections of Scripture, one which I have read and heard frequently throughout my lifetime. The believer in Jesus Christ is faced with the realities of life here on this earth and they are not always pleasant. More than likely they are more frequently unpleasant. However, as God's children, those who have been adopted into the family, we are encouraged that we are not just conquerors in these situations, we are MORE than conquerors, we are victorious because of the one who loved us. Because of God's great love for us we have been invited into the relationship of the Holy Trinity and we are now "partakers of the divine nature." Therefore God's love is not just poured out on us, God's love, God's very nature, has bound us to him.
We are now united with God and the bond is so great that nothing on this earth can separate us from God's nature. Human death cannot separate us from God. We have already seen this in the life and death of Christ. Life, and the joys thereof, cannot separate us from God. Angels (maybe here insinuating fallen angels -- therefore sources of evil) cannot separate us from God. The powers of this world -- no matter what they try to do to us cannot separate us from God. Neither can things that are happening right now, nor things in the future, or people in power, or forces of power--- nothing at all is going to be able to take us from that bond of love found in the Trinity. Nothing -- but us.
When I was a little girl I was often worried about my relationship with God. My Father was a preacher and I was probably one of his best "seekers," often finding myself at that altar. I just knew that when I walked out the door of the church I might have a bad thought -- and if I did -- and then were hit by a car -- I wasn't sure I'd really go to heaven. The altar almost became my "confessional" where I would go to just make sure that I had confessed everything that needed to be confessed and I was going to be okay. Somehow I missed the whole concept of the love of God. I was trying to do all of this on my own and wasn't allowing God to draw me into this holy relationship of love.
One day while sitting in a Systematic Theology class and studying the Holy Trinity I had my "aha" moment. The love of God is drawing me into this relationship of holy love found within the Trinity. It is a perpetual invitation to participate and have fellowship and commune with God. The deeper I go into that relationship the stickier it becomes. It's like glue and I want to stay in that place; I have no desire to go anywhere else! It is love and at the same time it is grace.
Yes, I believe it's possible to lose my salvation but it has to be because of a purposeful choice on my part to turn my back on God and walk out of that sticky relationship with the Holy Trinity -- and I think it's much harder to do that than I had ever thought possible. God's love and grace is reaching out to me and drawing me back into the relationship. Nothing that is of this earth, nothing that God has created can come in and separate me from the stickiness of God's love. The enemy may throw everything there is at us but God will keep reaching out to us in his abundant love and will continue work to draw us deeper into our relationship with him.
However, we can draw away from him. In our pain and suffering we can choose to close our hearts and our minds to him. We can turn around and walk away and only in this way can we be separated from the love of God. Sometimes it happens a little step at a time. We move out and become more distant from him and we close ourselves off from the community of faith. All of a sudden we discover that we have stepped outside of the relationship with God. This is when we really are in trouble! This is when we do need to repent and confess and return to the relationship that God has waiting for each and every single one of us. It's not that one bad thought, but it could be the combined accumulation of those bad thoughts -- going unchecked -- and the building of an emotional barrier between myself and God that eventually leads me to that separation from him. I am the only one who can separate myself from the love of God.
God in his infinite love is reaching out to us today to join him in holy fellowship. This fellowship leads to victory -- victory over anything the world can throw our way, as long as we remain stuck in the stickiness of God's love.
Lord, thank you for your peace and love which I have been privileged to experience. I need more of you today. Amen.