"And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord." -Romans 8
This morning, as I read this wonderful conclusion to Romans 8, I thought about the nuances of these amazing words and wondered why we have such a difficult time with God's love. Why do we doubt it in light of words like these. How can we think anything we do or say impacts this love? How much clearer does God have to say his love is unlimited, unchanging and unaffected by anything we do or say or believe? So, to help with meaning a bit may I add to this passage by giving you my translation of these most wonderful words? Here are these verses from my experience with God,
"I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. It is ours no matter what happens, no matter what we do or believe, no matter how mad we get at Him, whether we obey or rebel, nothing will change how he feels about us. God's love for us will never change, nothing can make God love us less. Here's how amazing it is: Neither death nor life, neither our sins or our good deeds, not our doubts or our lack of faith, neither angels nor demons, no power of good or evil anywhere in all of creation, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. His love reaches even into the hells we create and the hell to come. Nothing can stop God's love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. Do you know what that means? God loves us and there is nothing anyone, including you, can do about that. He loves us in our sins, in our doubts, in our frustrations, in our fears, in our rebellion, wherever we are or whatever we are doing....God loves us. Nothing can change that, nothing!" -Romans 8 (Mike's version)
As I read my additions to this passage it still feels so inadequate, so short of the depth and breadth of the love of God. Sadly, I just don't have words to describe his love and its nature as I wish. But, personally and most honestly, I have so often doubted his love and acceptance of me. I long for and strive to be loved, but it's never given by my efforts to gain God's approval. It's always there because of what Christ has done. If all I ever did was trust Christ as savior and then never did another thing God would still love me. Many will disagree with those words, but they are true. God's love is extended and will never be conditional or changed based on what I do or say or believe or don't believe. God's love is based on Christ, not on me and that's why nothing will ever change it....and for that I am so very thankful.
Thank you Lord for your wonderful unchanging love.