Cancelled. With the news of summer camp at Inagehi cancelled this past week, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about this word and how it’s affected me personally. Not many positive thoughts come to mind when I think of its connotation. Unfortunately, it’s a term we have all had to hear a lot recently. From ceremonies to deadlines, trips and activities, national and even global happenings to personal plans, it seems as if the word “cancelled” has crept into nearly every facet of our lives over the past two months. It’s even found its way into the Lord’s Church here at Buford as numerous events, plans, and services have been delayed or modified. Has this really changed things though? In the midst of everything around us seemingly being overturned and changed, what is immune to this spread of cancellation? When we focus on the answers to these questions, we start to see that the things that really matter have neither been cancelled nor ever will be!
The primary thing that will never be cancelled in our lives is the love that God has for us. The psalmist perhaps says it best when he states in Psalm 136:1, “Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, For His lovingkindness is everlasting.” He goes on to repeat this phrase after each following thought for the next twenty-five verses. Our God’s love for His people is truly everlasting and will never change, no matter the circumstances in our world and in our lives. We can be assured of this when we reflect on WHEN and HOW God extended this never-ending love to us. Paul writes in Romans 5:6-8, “For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” We see the true depth of God’s love by looking back at how he demonstrated it by sending His Son to die for us at our very worst (while lost in sin.) Paul continues in Romans 8:38-39 about the depth of God’s love to us, “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.” We may have witnessed cancellations for many things in our lives that we love, but one thing that will never be taken away from us is the love our Father has for His children.
What we receive from God’s unending love – salvation through Christ – also provides us with another aspect in our lives that will never be cancelled or altered – the reward of Heaven. Jesus himself speaks to this in Matthew 5:19-21, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” The reward of Heaven waiting for God’s people is something that will never be changed by God or cancelled to those who have lived faithfully before Him. We may have ceremonies that recognize our hard work and determination cancelled or greatly changed through this time, but one reward will remain there for those who follow Christ – our rest in Heaven (Hebrews 4:1-16).
We are so blessed to have such a strong anchor in God during these tumultuous and chaotic times where everything seems to be changing. God’s love for His people and the reward waiting for the faithful will never be cancelled or modified, and on account of that, I believe we can face any change or even cancellation that comes our way together.