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What does it mean when we say God’s love is UNCONDITIONAL?

For the purposes of this month’s Pastor’s Paragraph, I would like to change Hank Williams Jr’s words that were used to begin “Monday Night Football” for so many years… I would like to change it to the following… “Are you ready for a LOVE STORY and FOOTBALL”? In a supermarket, Kurtis the stockboy, was busily working when a new voice came over the intercom asking for a carry out at checkout register 4. Kurtis was almost finished and wanted to get some fresh air. He decided to answer the call. As he approached the checkout stand, a distant smile caught his eye, the new checkout girl was beautiful. She was an older woman (maybe 26, and he was only 22) and he fell in love. Later that day, after his shift was over, he waited by the punch clock to find out her name. She came into the break room, smiled softly at him, took her card and punched out, then left. He looked at her card, BRENDA. He walked out only to see her start walking up the road. Next day, he waited outside as she left the supermarket and offered her a ride home. He looked harmless enough and she accepted. When he dropped her off, he asked if maybe he could see her again outside of work. She simply said it wasn’t possible. He pressed and she explained she had two children and she couldn’t afford a baby- sitter so he offered to pay for the babysitter. Reluctantly, she accepted his offer for a date for the following Saturday. That Saturday night, he arrived at her door only to have her tell him that she was unable to go with him. The babysitter had called and canceled to which Kurtis simply said, "Well, let’s take the kids with us." She tried to explain that taking the children was not an option but, again, not taking “no” for an answer, he pressed. Finally, Brenda brought him inside to meet her children. She had an older daughter who was just as cute as a bug, Kurtis thought, and then Brenda brought out her son, in a wheelchair. He was born a paraplegic with Downs Syndrome. Kurtis asked Brenda, "I still don’t understand why the kids can’t come with us?" Brenda was amazed. Most men would run away from a woman with two kids, especially if one had disabilities, just like her first husband and father of her children did. That evening, Kurtis and Brenda loaded up the kids, went to dinner and the movies. When her son needed any- thing, Kurtis would take care of him. When he needed to use the restroom, he picked him up out of his chair, took him and brought him back. The kids loved Kurtis. At the end of the evening, Brenda knew this was the man she was going to marry and spend the rest of her life with. A year later, they were married and Kurtis adopted both of her children. Since then, they have added two more kids. So what happened to the stockboy and the checkout girl? Well, Mr. & Mrs. Kurt Warner, they moved to St. Louis, where the St. Louis Rams employed him. He was the team’s quarterback. He was selected Most Valuable Player of the National Football League the week before he led his team in the Super Bowl. You see, Kurtis isn’t a winner because he was an MVP. He is a winner because he has come to understand that God’s love for him is unconditional. As a child of God, Kurtis has determined to be an example of God’s love. Remember, Romans 5:8 says: But God demonstrates his own love for us: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. There is nothing that you can do to make God love you any more than He does right now. There is nothing that you can do to make God love you any less than He does right now. That’s unconditional love. Go and demonstrate it!
Author -- Pastor Hale First Church of the Nazarene Bangor, Maine