Romans 8:38-40 (New Living Translation)
New Living Translation (NLT)
Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004 by Tyndale Charitable Trust. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers.
38 And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a] neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. 39 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.
Those words, "Nothing can separate," came to mind this morning. I was making the bed, but preoccupied by a hurt when I thought about them--these words that are a great comfort when it comes to our relationship with God.
"We are fearfully and wonderfully made," says Psalm 139, but sometimes I wonder at the capacity for complexity that God built into us when it comes to interpersonal relationships. Sometimes I would like to be a more simple soul, but then a voice warns me, "Be careful what you wish for," and I stop with a smile--that time may come soon enough. For now I'd better rejoice in the gift of knowing and being known--and I do.
"Nothing can separate;" I heard God's voice, loud and clear saying, "These words don't just apply to me, but to my children." Well, I think it was God; it sounded like him. I'd never thought of the words being applied to human relationships before and if he is our pattern, if we are being conformed to his image, shouldn't they?
Walls of self protection arise in me when someone hurts me; and ever so slight distance, that I allow to swirl up around me like a gauzy veil.
Yet I'm reminded by the words from Romans 8 that God values community to the highest possible degree and so then, must we. I must allow nothing to separate my brother or sister from my love. Nursing a hurt is nursing an enemy dart that I have allowed to lodge in my heart. I need to either deal with it or evict it from its lodging place. I have only these choices and no ruminating, no walls of protection or gauzy veils of distance allowed.