Tag Archives: Love

Who or What Can Separate Us from God?

A View of the Guiding Light in a World of Darkness is a weekly devotional that seeks to apply Biblical principles to our everyday lives, written by inspirational speaker and writer, Jeremy Curry.

Romans 8:34-39

34 Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written:

“For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”

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.

Each year, my wife and I invite our immediate family and some of our closest friends to an annual fall party we host at our house. Several of our friends that come are people that we only get to see once a year. Throughout the rest of the year, our life gets in the way with its busy daily tasks and priorities that quickly use up all other available time. With some of these friends, I text back and forth with them almost every day to keep each other updated or share what is going on in our lives. But, nothing is quite like seeing each other in person. After months (and sometimes years) apart, we join together with our friends and family at our party. It is as if we had never been separated.

I think about the things that separate us from others. There are miniscule things that keep us from seeing each other, such as mundane tasks like grocery shopping, cleaning, and maintaining the house. And then there are more important things such as piano lessons, soccer games, marching band contests, and other activities that simply consume our time. Besides activities, sometimes geographical distance separates us. Yesterday, I watched some of my best friends (who had flown in for our party) get on a plane and fly thousands of miles away; none of us knowing for sure exactly when we will see each other again.

Then, there are the more difficult things in life that separate people: Families torn apart by tragedy, breakdowns in the relationship between husbands and wives, bitterness that keeps a father from loving his daughter, a brother resentful of his sister, and friendships broken by a lack of trust. Our sinful nature and things that are out of our control keep us from loving each other to the fullest. They can keep us from displaying the love of God to the best of our ability.

Despite our human nature, despite our sin, isn’t it humbling and amazing to know that no matter what happens; if we love and believe that Jesus Christ is our Savior, there is absolutely nothing that can separate us from the love of our Father? It doesn’t matter what you have done, it doesn’t matter who you have hurt . . . no matter how your relationships are currently separated at this very moment, God is still there. Nothing can separate us from His love. Not “death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation ” can separate us from His amazing, abundant, ever-lasting love as it is always present, and nothing will ever break it.


Whatever you are going through right now, you can have God’s love. If you want a never-ending love that is above all power, if you want to live with our Father forever, pray this simple prayer:

Jesus, I believe you died on the cross for my sins. I want to live with you forever and share in your everlasting love. Please forgive me for all of my sins, come in to my heart, and fill me with the Holy Spirit. I believe You are the one true King, the Son of the Almighty God. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

It’s that simple. God loves you. He loves me. He loves all of us. May all of us remember that we can never be separated from His love as we look forward to the day when He looks at us and says, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” We will be welcomed home and live with our Father forever, never to be separated from Him or His love. How glorious that day will be!

Father, shower us with Your love. Remind us that You are all we need. When we are discouraged, when relationships are separated, pour out Your abounding love over us. You are the everlasting God, the Holy One, the Almighty. Thank you for never separating us from Your love, Father. When we are at our lowest, when we are attacked by the enemy, when the world falls on in us, fill our hearts, minds, souls, and spirits with Your love. Set us free and become our hearts desire. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

If you have been touched by this devotional, Your Blind Faith would like to hear from you. If you don’t feel comfortable leaving a public comment, send a note to jeremy@yourblindfaith.com to let us know how God has touched your life with this devotional. We will not publish or share your information.

Is There a Limit to Forgiveness?

A View of the Guiding Light in a World of Darkness is a weekly devotional that seeks to apply Biblical principles to our everyday lives, written by inspirational speaker, Jeremy Curry.

Ephesians 4:31-32

31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Matthew 18:21-35

21 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?”

22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.

23 “Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24 As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold was brought to him. 25 Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt.

26 “At this the servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ 27 The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.

28 “But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred silver coins. He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded.

29 “His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it back.’

30 “But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. 31 When the other servants saw what had happened, they were outraged and went and told their master everything that had happened.

32 “Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. 33 Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ 34 In anger his master handed him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.

35 “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”

1 John 3:19-24

19 This is how we know that we belong to the truth and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence: 20 If our hearts condemn us, we know that God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. 21 Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God 22 and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him. 23 And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. 24 The one who keeps God’s commands lives in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.

Twelve years ago today, I woke up late, threw on my clothes as quickly as possible, and rushed to my car to try to make it on time to one of my college classes.  I tuned the radio to my favorite country music radio station only to hear a highly unusual voice.  Instead of my favorite tunes blaring from the radio, national anchorman Dan Rather was reporting and I remember instantly hearing that the Pentagon and the World Trade Center had been attacked and possibly destroyed.  I thought it was a joke played by the morning DJs until I turned to every other preset station on my radio only to hear the exact same news report.  I looked around and saw no one in my neighborhood.  My small piece of the world stood still.  My immediate thought became, “I have missed the rapture.”  My new wife of just over a month had already left for work, but I was certain she had been taken up.  I began driving frantically through various streets to see if anyone else was left.  God gave me a well-deserved dose of, “Don’t forget my commandments” as I thought about all the reasons I must not have been called up with the others.  Who did I not forgive?  Did God forgive me for all of the sins I had committed? Eventually, I realized the rapture had not occurred, but in some of the darkest hours that America has ever experienced, I thought long and hard about my walk with Christ.

It was just the beginning of a dreadful day that America would never forget.  We watched helplessly as the two tallest buildings in the world fell to the ground in smoke and flames.  We saw the look of horror as thousands of people ran for their lives from the falling buildings.  We heard the cries for help and the screams of those who could not be saved as they fell from the towers.  We saw the Pentagon, our biggest symbol of American defense, go up in flames.  We saw the giant crater in the ground created by heroes who brought down United Flight 93. These are memories, images, and sounds that are etched in our minds.  The feelings of sorrow were overwhelming.  In the next few days, America would come together like she never had before to bring the “faceless cowards” to justice.  In the coming months, the sorrow would pass and Americans would show their anger over what had taken place.  It was a natural course of events and emotion over such a devastating loss. We will never forget.  It was a defining moment for our country.


Each September 11, we relive those moments through the images on our televisions and listen to the frantic calls for help.  Those emotions of sorrow and anger tend to re-emerge.  When you think about those days, how do you feel today?  Do you forgive those who took so many lives?  Do you forgive the enemy who would continue to do their best to destroy our troops?  This is where we see the power of God.  It is where we can see His grace superseding our imagination.  If Osama Bin Laden had asked for forgiveness and for Christ to come into his heart as his personal Savior before he died, God would have forgiven him.  It’s at times like these when I am reminded why I am not God.  As Beth Moore says, “God doesn’t work on sense. He works on grace.”

Fortunately, the things we typically must forgive each other do not cost thousands of lives.  Sometimes they are big things, sometimes they are small things, but God never calls us not to forgive one another.  His grace is a model for everyone we should and must forgive.  When I think about God’s grace for us, I am humbled beyond belief.  When I really and truly stop to think deeply about it, I am brought to my knees.  Chuck Swindoll says it best:

“Grace has to be the loveliest word in the English language. It embodies almost every attractive quality we hope to find in others. Grace is a gift of the humble to the humiliated. Grace acknowledges the ugliness of sin by choosing to see beyond it. Grace accepts a person as someone worthy of kindness despite whatever grime or hard-shell casing keeps him or her separated from the rest of the world. Grace is a gift of tender mercy when it makes the least sense.”

We have all made mistakes that we wish we hadn’t made.  The blood of Jesus washes those away.  Those closest to us can choose to accept or reject us because of our sinful actions.  Our passages this week call for bitterness to be gone, for kindness to shine, and love with forgiveness to prevail “just as in Christ God forgave you.”  If you find those closest to you distance themselves from you after you ask for forgiveness, ask yourself if they are following what Christ asked them to do.  If not, it may be time to cut those relationships.  Attempting to stay close to those who can’t even forgive their closest friends will ultimately lead you to be like them: unforgiving.  Jesus doesn’t call us to forgive others when we feel like it or at a distance.  He asks us to forgive people like God forgave us through Christ.  That is, we are completely reconciled with Him and we will live with Him for eternity. 

If those closest to you exhibit the grace of God, forgiving with “tender mercy when it makes the least sense,” don’t lose those people in your life.  They will remain close to you forever as they emulate God, His commandments, and His love.

How are you forgiving others?  Are you the one forgiving from your heart?  Do you only speak the words “I forgive,” but don’t truly forgive?  Or, perhaps your heart has become cold and bitterness has set in, so that forgiveness seems impossible?  God has no limit on forgiveness.  He forgives when we think it is impossible.  As we read in the parable, when we owe Him far more than we have (including the value of our family), God still forgives.  Are you forgiving like Him?  If not, take this moment, get on your knees and ask God to heal your heart so that you can forgive others as He forgives us.

Maybe it is not others who you need to forgive.  Instead, maybe you need to forgive yourself?  You have something awful in your past you wish you hadn’t done, you find yourself losing relationships with others because of your own sinful actions, or maybe you have deeply hurt those closest to you?  When these things happen, we are often filled with overwhelming guilt.  While others may not exhibit Christ’s grace toward us in these situations as we discussed previously, it is not typically the people in our lives that lack grace that affect us the most. It is our conscious and the Accuser (Revelation 12:10), who accuses us “day and night” before God.  Thankfully, just as God is greater than Satan, He is also “greater than our hearts.”  It will take time and it is a process, but He can take away the pain.

It is time to forgive those who have hurt us.  It is time to forgive ourselves.  God is greater than all we are.  And, if He forgives us, then how can we (as lowly sinners), be conceited enough to think we should not forgive others or ourselves? 

Father, restore us.  Forgive us.  Help us to forgive others as well as ourselves.  Restore broken relationships.  Restore in us a clean heart.  Renew our spirit.  Remind us of Your ways.  Make forgiveness a part of our lives as we remember that You, Father, are greater than us and greater than our hearts.  Bring reconciliation to our lives. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

To Judge or Not to Judge?

A View of the Guiding Light in a World of Darkness is a weekly devotional that seeks to apply Biblical principles to our everyday lives, written by inspirational speaker, Jeremy Curry.

1 “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.

Judging. It’s something we have all done whether we meant to do it or not.  We look at people and automatically make assumptions about them.  We see a man place a disabled parking placard in his window walk (seemingly unaffected with any disease) into a store. We wonder why he thinks he is disabled, all-the-while not knowing he suffers from severe kidney issues with horrific and chronic pain.  Perhaps we take it further and our judging is more direct as we critically scold someone about their behavior face-to-face.  And, in the 21st century, we attempt to take our judging to a whole new level by doing it in cyberspace via texting, emailing, Facebooking, tweeting, or using some other less confrontational means of judging. Sometimes it is through gossip and other times we angrily confront people directly in cyberspace.  No matter the medium, all of us have judged another at one point or another in our lives.

I know I’ve certainly judged others in ways that I shouldn’t and I have also been judged by others in ways that shouldn’t have been done to me.  It’s easy to prosecute, but heartbreaking when you are the accused.  In fact, I recently read on Facebook something one of my friends had posted, “Don’t judge others because they sin differently than you.”  Really?  Should we never ever try to get our brothers and sisters on the right track?  Is that what I would want from someone else if I were consistently and constantly sinning?  That’s not love, that’s tolerance. And they are two completely different concepts.  Tolerance, when used incorrectly, can completely push us off of the path that God wants for our lives. Love, on the other hand, makes us rely on Him and gives us guidance, putting us back on the straight and narrow path toward God.  But, how should we act when others, including our close friends and family, are sinning?

In the verses above, we read the words of Jesus saying, “Judge not, or you too will be judged.”  What exactly does that mean?  Does it mean that we should never tell someone if they are right or wrong according to God’s Word?  Does it mean that we should let everyone live how they want to as long as it makes them feel good?  Let’s take a closer look at the passage.  Verse 5 says, “You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”  If we were never to judge one another, then why are we told we can remove the speck from our brother’s eye?  The concept of judging and removing specs must be contrary to each other, but perhaps not well understood in the English language.  The Greek word for “judge” is Krino.  When studying the original Greek, it seems more likely that the word “judge” in this instance is better translated as condemning someone.  We see the same Greek word used in John 3:17, which reads, “For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.”  Some translations of this verse even replace the word “judge” with “condemn.”  Again, we see the context of the word “judge” as someone who is condemning rather than someone who is pointing out sinful behavior that should be corrected.

In the above verses in Matthew, Jesus is giving the Sermon on the Mount. And, He is, in fact, telling people how to live when he tells them to first take out the plank from their own eye.  So, He is not only telling us what to do, but also showing us how to do it at the same time as we see Him point out sinful behavior of the hypocrites He is speaking to.

As Christians, we are constantly bombarded with others telling us that the Bible says, “You can’t tell me how to live.”  That’s clearly not the case.  It is more evident that we shouldn’t be approaching others in an angry manner or condemning someone to Hell (judging) when we, ourselves, are all sinners.  However, we see the great leaders like Paul telling people how to live many times by giving them guidance throughout the New Testament.  Of course, he did his absolute best to do it in a loving manner. 

Additionally, if we were called not to help keep others from sin, then how would the world know what God asks us to do?  Does this mean you should confront someone in anger in regards to their sinful behavior? No. Does this mean that you should continually pound someone on their sin again and again and again? Probably not, because you wouldn’t be showing love to that person.  Should you text your friend or put on Twitter and Facebook about how awful a person is?  No, not even close.

Remember, our second greatest command is to love our neighbors (Matthew 22:39).  We must do everything in love, including approaching others about their sinful behavior.  If you need guidance on how to do this, we are told exactly what we should do to correct the sinful acts of others in Matthew 18:15-17.

The next time you hear someone tell you that you shouldn’t tell them how to live, ask yourself these questions:

1. Did I pray about the situation?
2. Did I make sure that I had no planks in my eye? 
3. Did I approach the person one-on-one with love and in a loving manner?
4. Did I do my best to give guidance instead of judgment?

Remember that we are all hypocrites.  None of us are without sin.  But, it is also our responsibility to keep each other on track. As Paul said in 1 Thessalonians 5:14-15, “14 And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone. 15 Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.”  In other words, don’t judge, but rather, give guidance.

Just as Jesus provided us with rules on how God wants us to live, then shouldn’t we teach the world about those same rules so that all may learn about His great love for us?  While we are not called to judge one another, we are certainly called to guide each other.  Pull others back on to the path who have left it, and they will do the same for you when you stray.

Judge not. Rebuke when necessary. Give guidance. Love always.

Father, we know that we have all condemned others in a way that we shouldn’t.  We know we are all sinners.  We ask that you work in our lives to remind us of Your grace and enable us to exhibit that same grace to others as we strive to become like Christ.  Give us love, grace, and peace in situations that seem out of our control as we seek to bring our brothers and sisters back to a right relationship with you. Keep us from judging and help us to give wise guidance to others.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.