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The Greatest Love Story Ever.

There was a very unusual military funeral in California in December of 2013. Sgt. First Class Joseph Gantt, who fought in both World War II and the Korean War, was laid to rest. He had been captured in Korea in 1950 and died the following year. But his body was not returned for many years, and his death was never confirmed by the North Koreans.

His wife, Clara, waited for decades for her husband to come back. She regularly went to meetings with government officials seeking information about what had happened. Clara even bought a house and had it professionally landscaped so all Joseph would have to do when he came home was go fishing. She was ninety-four years old when his remains were finally brought home for a military funeral with full honors. It wasn’t the homecoming she dreamed of, but she finally knew his fate. Clara told a reporter who interviewed her, “He told me if anything happened to him, he wanted me to remarry. And I told him ‘No, no.’ Here I am, still his wife, and I’m going to remain his wife until the day the Lord calls me home.”

That’s the kind of love story you don’t often come across in this life.  It reminds us that Love, true godly love,  is not temporary or transient. Love is a commitment that is meant to last. Love is not based on everything going right or always being happy. Love is not an emotional feeling but rather a choice of the will. Casual commitments do not produce a foundation for deep and meaningful relationships. Instead we should love others as God loves us—with an unfailing love that never ends.  This Sunday Bruce will take us through the greatest love story ever,  and recognize how God’s love for those he calls his own goes above and beyond anything we deserve.