Released from Relational Distance

Preached by

Life throws us curveballs we never saw coming. Unexpected illnesses, hardships, and tragedies that shake us to our core. In those moments, we realize how flimsy our self-sufficiency truly is. We need something more.

We need a love that will catch us – a love that understands our pain, a love that will move toward us. Jesus’ love provides exactly that – if we have the wisdom to open our hearts to receive it.

  1. Unexpected seasons of trial and suffering reveal our unreliable sources of power. Only the love of Christ can sustain us through hard times.
  2. The love of Christ sustains us in two ways:
    • It’s a love that comes after us. Jesus’ love drew him to come save us while we were still sinners and unworthy. His love will continue to move toward us in our suffering.
    • It’s a love that understands. Jesus himself experienced tribulation, persecution, hunger, danger, and death on the cross. His love for us meets us where we are, rather than trying to drag us to a place we’re not ready for.
  1. Those suffering to open their hearts to Jesus’ love. Trust that his love can be with you in your pain, give you a sense of safety and seenness, and even give you joy. Do not close off or distance yourself from Jesus in your hardship.

The love of Jesus is the source of strength, comfort, and even joy we long for in our most difficult seasons. But we must choose to open our hearts to receive it.

When hardship strikes, do not distance yourself from Jesus. Trust that his love, which drew him to come save you while you were still a sinner, will continue moving toward you now. His love, shaped by his own tribulation and suffering, understands your pain deeply.

So do not lose hope. Move toward the one who loves you most. Let his love change the way you endure through trial. Refuse despair and turning to coping mechanisms that harden your heart. Instead, open your heart to the healing comfort of Jesus’ love. His love has the power to sustain you, carry you through, and bring you out the other side into new life.

Will you receive that love today, right where you are?

Verses

Romans 8:35-39, John 1:1-2, Romans 5:6-8, Romans 8:15

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