In 2001, many years after I had given my life to the Lord I found myself in a place of sin and despair. I was angry at life and extremely disillusioned with what life meant. I found myself on the edge of walking away from my faith because things seemed so unfair and difficult. I questioned daily if God was there for me, if He had heard my prayers, or if He would even answer. As the silence from Heaven continued I grew more hurt and disillusioned with my faith in God. Why would He allow such pain in my life when I had followed Him for over 20 years? It made no sense to me and I began walking away…day by day…eventually moment by moment turning my back on my Savior. I was in a very dark place.
I am certain many of you can identify with a point in your life that you made a conscience decision to walk away from God. The details of your personal story and mine pale in comparison to the actions we took to step away from the one who saved us from sin and death. At some point we began to believe the lie that God cannot or is choosing not to help us in a situation, that maybe our salvation was a hoax, or that we weren’t given salvation at the moment we asked for it. Or perhaps we needed to do more for the salvation to stick.
How pitiful for us that at some point in our life we believed the lie that our salvation was revocable…that some how we still needed to earn our salvation. I remember the feeling of being utterly lost and feeling hopeless.
It was in early 2002 that I was touched by the Holy Spirit. In my deepest moment of despair, with the thought running through my mind, “what purpose do I have and why should I continue to live,” God showed up! I was face down on the floor, balling my eyes out ready to give up on everything…my marriage, my family, my life…and then out of what seemed like no where I heard the words, “Get up. You are mine and I have a plan for you.” I immediately stood up and as I stood, I knew deep within me that my salvation was real…that I was saved…regardless of what I had done I was still a child of God. Nothing could separate me from Him…even though I was intentionally trying to run away from God.
I felt what I can only imagine Paul felt as he met Jesus on the road to Damascus. This unmistakable feeling that the love of God far exceeds anything I could ever do in life. Paul wrote in Romans 8:38-39:
“For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Only someone who had experienced sin and then been given a new lease on life could write with conviction the words in Romans 8:38-39. Paul was speaking from experience. Paul could not have written with passion the words in Romans if he had not lived it himself. He knew without a shadow of a doubt that physical death could not separate God from those that love Him. He knew that the life we live, not the angels that God created, nor anything else in creation could separate us from God.
Because Paul had lived a life of sin he knew and was convinced that principalities—the things we cannot see, any spiritual power or ruler good or evil—could not undo what Jesus did on the cross. The things Paul could not see, that we cannot see today – cannot separate, cannot tear us apart from, cannot rip us out of God’s hand, nor place us in an eternal hell.
When I think about where I was that faithful day in 2002, when God reached down from heaven filled me with the complete sense that I was His, I understood that nothing I was doing in the present or anything I could do in the future would undo what He had completed in my life. That completion was the fact that I am His. Nothing ever, in this world, in the spiritual, in the future can ever undo the love God had and has for me…or for any believer who puts their faith in Him.
Where ever you are today in your walk with God you are not outside of His love for you! You cannot ever – I mean an unequivocally never – be separated from Him once you give your life to Him. It doesn’t matter what you “feel” or what you think you have done that would separate you from the love of God…nothing can undo your salvation.
Even in my darkest moments when I thought I had lost His love, grace and favor, I had not. At the exact moment I needed to know that I was still His, He showed up. And at that moment I knew, just as Paul knew, nothing would ever separate me from God.
What ever your circumstance is today don’t waste another moment guessing or wondering if you belong to Him. Receive the love He has for you and believe that once you accept Him, there is nothing you can ever do…never, ever do…that will rip you out of God’s hand. For His love for you knows no bounds.
Tomorrow is Easter and I am eternally thankful that Jesus paid the price for me and that nothing can ever separate me from Him. Be blessed as you remember what Christ did for you.