Nothing Can Separate Us From God's Love

August 19, 2020


Leadership Notes


I cannot predict the future. I hardly know what tomorrow may bring. All I do know is I love God/Jesus, my family and the wonderful people of Covenant Church. In that order, by the way. Those are the things I'm absolutely sure of. There are so many other unknowns out there.


When I pause to think about the future, I wonder how the current pandemic will impact the church, moving forward. Here are a couple of things we know now:


* Nearly 33% of people who self-identified as regular worship attenders are doing nothing right now. Meaning they are not even worshiping via live stream or other online options. Not their church, not any church.


* Fewer people are reading their Bibles during the pandemic than were reading them before the pandemic.


Some are speculating that, while these numbers will vary from church-to- church, roughly 20% of people who attended worship before the pandemic will not return. I hope this is an overstatement/overreaction.


Speaking over overstating things, in recent polling, most people believe that 20% of American have had Covid-19 and 9% have died from it {that would be almost 30 million deaths!}. In reality, less than 2% of Americans have tested positive for it and 0.05% have died from it. What drives these misunderstandings?


Aging is inevitable. There are things we can do to mitigate the negative effects of aging. Healthy eating, exercise, not smoking, no-to-moderate alcohol consumption, access to health care, hobbies or activities that keep the mind sharp; these are the kinds of things that can mitigate the effects of aging.


When Covid-19 burst onto the scene, the goal was to flatten the curve and slow the spread so hospitals and healthcare workers would not get overrun. In other words, mitigation. It seems like that has worked. The goal has never been prevention or eradication. We can be cautiously careful, not fearful. Each one of us continuously negotiates that sweet spot in our lives. As we do this, we do so in the knowledge that, in these challenging and exciting times, because Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior, because he has chosen us to follow him, there is nothing in all creation that can separate us from his love. So, we go forth trusting fully in the sovereignty of God.


In closing, here's some insight from John Calvin {The Institutes of the Christian Religion}:


The only real worth which we bring to God is to offer him our unworthiness and vileness so that, in his mercy, he may make us worthy of him.


Keep that in mind, especially as we approach another contentious election season. I need to free myself from the misguided notion that all good people should see things my way. May our hearts be guarded by the grace and mercy that God has shown us in Jesus Christ.


With Deep Love and Affection,


Richard

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