Being genuinely loved is overwhelming. It is not the fact that you are loved that overwhelms. It is the meaning of being loved that overwhelms. When you reflect on the fact that a wonderful person loves you enough to be your wife or husband, you are astounded. But when you seek to grasp the significance of that fact, you are stunned. You accept the fact, but you struggle with the meaning and significance.

God's love affects us in the same way. Realizing that He genuinely loves "me" is overwhelming. The fact that He loves us individually is astounding. But the meaning and significance of His love exceeds our comprehension.

The bond of genuine love in a congregation has the same impact. A congregation filled with genuine love overwhelms its members and visitors. Such love is naturally obvious--you feel it as well as see it. The fact that it exists is astounding. Its significance exceeds comprehension.

Joyce and I are richly blessed by your love. Thank you for loving us! Once, after moving to Fort Smith, I was asked in a television interview about my wife. I stated--truthfully and without hesitation--that she was my greatest asset. I could not use my life as I do without her. It takes a very specific kind of person to be the wife of a preacher. It is not possible to explain all the ways that she supports and encourages me. Neither is it possible to enumerate all the ways that her devotion and service to our Lord blesses and compliments my efforts.

So many of you have told me how much you appreciate Joyce's friendliness, love for people, sense of humor, and wit. Your appreciation for her is a great joy to me.

Your support and encouragement when she had surgery touched us. Though we were out of state, never were either of us concerned about your understanding. We knew you were praying for us and were "there for us." In fact, we had an incredible double blessing. Our spiritual family in Oxford was also "there for us" and caring for us with the same love.

Last week you gave us a very generous check to help with the medical expenses of her surgery. Our medical insurance has an extremely high deductible. Your generosity paid the entire amount of the deductible. Thank you!

You do so much for us! You provide for our needs so wonderfully that I feel a sense of embarrassment when I consider all that you have done and are doing. Our love and appreciation for you never stops growing. My prayer never ceases: "Lord, help us be the blessing this congregation needs. May one of the ways that Your incredible love flows to them be through us."

David Chadwell

West-Ark Church of Christ, Fort Smith, AR
Bulletin Article, 19 October 1997

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