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We begin a new sermon series this week entitled, “Imperishable: Finding the Things that Matter.”  What does truly matter in our lives?  What will endure?  As we have gone through the pandemic, it has shown us the fragile nature of our lives.  We depend upon supply chains and manufacturing processes and when these things break down, what can we trust? The first sermon in this series is “Love.” This is not only a basic human emotion or a need, but it is also an action.  We have seen first responders, medical professionals, and many other segments of our society putting themselves at risk to meet the needs of others.  Yet, after the crisis has subsided will our society genuinely change?  It is doubtful that we will be different, unless we find a stronger and more enduring love in our lives.  We turn to a classic moment in the Gospel of John 3:11-21 where Jesus is teaching Nicodemus.  The central point of this passage in John 3:16 reads, “God so loved that God gave,” but how does this help us to love?  These verses mirror our broken condition and our failure to truly love. It also shares with us the path to God’s enduring love, which will never, ever perish.  As you read these verses, may you be filled with God’s love for you!  John 3:11-21: 11 Very truly I tell you, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony. 12 I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things? 13 No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven– the Son of Man. 14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15 that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.” 16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. 19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.  (NIV)