Maybe, Probably, Hopefully
I am convinced… that [nothing else] in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39 (NIV)
Imagine a guy who meets the woman of his dreams and falls hopelessly in love. He eventually decides to “pop the question.” So he gets down on one knee, takes her hand, and with trembling voice says: “Will you marry me?”
She says, “Yes!… maybe.”
He says, “What do you mean, ‘Yes!… maybe?’”
“Well, I’m saying ‘Yes,’ but I’m not totally sure.”
How much joy does this guy leave with? Not much. He has some hope of happiness. But it might not happen, so rejoicing would be premature.
You could believe all the promises of the gospel—justification, sanctification, adoption, and glorification, but if you add a “maybe” at the end, you lose all the joy. It is like putting a nail in the tire of your car—all the air goes out, and it won’t take you where you want to go.
“God is totally for me in Christ, if I live a good life this week.” Can you feel the air going out of the tire? “God is totally for me in Christ, but especially when I pray or witness.” As soon as we make God’s love conditional on something we do, we lose the joy and power of his love.
Many Christians believe that they are justified, sanctified, adopted, and glorified… maybe, probably, hopefully. You feel that God is for you… usually, normally, frequently. But you are not convinced that God is for you totally… always, unconditionally, and forever in Jesus Christ.
Do you think God wants you to be like the girl pulling petals off a flower saying, “He loves me… He loves me not…”? Why or why not?