Romans 8:37-39 (NIV)
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 5:8 (NIV)
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
When I was in junior high, my best friends Trisha, Bailey and I were thick as thieves. We had tons of sleepovers and spent a lot of time at Trisha’s house. Trisha’s parents became like a second set of parents to me. Over time we grew apart and lost touch, but one day I heard the news that Trisha’s father, Ian, fell ill, underwent surgery and suffered permanent brain damage. It was heartbreaking and as someone who looked up to him as a father figure in my younger years, I couldn’t bear to see this once vibrant man now unable to communicate or care for himself.
In the midst of this I saw a picture of love and marriage that has never left me. His wife Linda spent her days, for the rest of Ian’s life, caring for him in every way. Her love wasn’t dependent on what he could do for her because it was impossible for him to give back. Over the years of their marriage, their love grew beyond conditions and circumstances and she stood by her vows no matter the cost. While preparing for marriage, I often thought of Ian and Linda. I knew that kind of sacrificial love is what I wanted to commit to with Nathan, my husband.
I was inspired by Ian and Linda as I wrote about God’s unconditional love in a song called “Beautiful Mystery”. They painted an incredible picture of how God cares for us in our weakest moments and made the ultimate sacrifice for us through His Son Jesus. There is nothing we can do to make Him love us any more or less because His love doesn’t depend on us. We are loved because God is love. He is three persons in one (Father, Son and Holy Spirit), so His love is able to exist in the Trinity, independent of outside factors. It sounds complicated, but the beautiful mystery is that because of this complicated fact, things are very simple for us. We are just loved; “There’s no fine print, no hoops to jump, no points to earn, [He] just [says] come.”
We can be encouraged that just like Ian and Linda were committed to each other even in the darkest times, God is committed to loving us every day, in every season, in every way.
COMMENT BELOW: What is the strongest example of love you’ve ever seen in real life? What has this shown you about God’s love?