Like many boys who grew up in the 60’s and 70’s, I spent countless hours reading Mad Magazine, the cover of which always sported a larger than life image of the guy pictured above, Alfred E. Neuman. His mantra was “What, me worry?” Well, in the past few weeks I’ve been expending significant mental and physical energy worrying about where we are as a church and where we are going.
It’s a good thing that God has a great sense of humor. Today, Paul again reminds us that we don’t need to worry because in the end Jesus will prevail.
Brothers and sisters:
If God is for us, who can be against us?
He did not spare his own Son
but handed him over for us all,
how will he not also give us everything else along with him?
Who will bring a charge against God’s chosen ones?
It is God who acquits us.
Who will condemn?
It is Christ Jesus who died, rather, was raised,
who also is at the right hand of God,
who indeed intercedes for us.
What will separate us from the love of Christ?
Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine,
or nakedness, or peril, or the sword?
For I am convinced that neither death, nor life,
nor angels, nor principalities,
nor present things, nor future things,
nor powers, nor height, nor depth,
nor any other creature will be able to separate us
from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Paul’s words are are both encouraging and comforting for all of us. He is right, nothing will separate us from the love of Christ. But if we are just comforted by Paul’s words and don’t enter into the hard work of building up the kingdom of God, we will have failed to do what the Master directed us to do.
So should we worry? No. Instead, we should freely forgive, speak the truth boldly, give generously of our gifts and pray unceasingly.