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1.3 Devotions from the Book of Ephesians

Maybe you already know that Paul was in prison and suffering when he wrote to the Ephesians. But, did you realize that the first 3 chapters of his letter focus on God and who we are in Christ? The reality of our identity in Jesus, as adopted sons and daughters, is so important that Paul spends the first half of this book telling Christians about our position in Him. He explains the power we have because of grace and the finished work of Christ. All this before there’s one word of instruction.

I think this is a beautiful picture of the Father’s love, don’t you? His grace goes before us in the finished work of Jesus on the cross and Paul tells us exactly how that love securely situates us to powerfully live united for Christ. We need this assurance because…life. is. hard.

In our upcoming play, Little Women, by Natalie Snapp, the lyrics of Marmee’s song say:

“THE FATHER’S LOVE, THE FATHER’S LOVE WILL ALWAYS GUIDE YOU.

THE FATHER’S LOVE, THE FATHER’S LOVE WILL ALWAYS HOLD YOU IN HIS ARMS.

THROUGH THE HARDSHIP, THROUGH THE DOUBT,

TIMES OF PLENTY, TIMES WITHOUT,

THE FATHER’S LOVE, THE FATHER’S LOVE WILL ALWAYS KEEP YOU.

THE FATHER’S LOVE, THE FATHER’S LOVE WILL ALWAYS SHOW YOU THE WAY.”

Faced with war, illnesses, financial uncertainty, loss, and identity crisis, the 4 March sisters have valuable lessons to learn as they learn to trust the Father. Their troubles sound familiar, don’t they? Like Ecclesiastes says in 1:9b, “There’s nothing new under the sun.” We also have valuable lessons to learn through the struggles of this life. Marmee’s song goes on:

“EV’RY DAY WILL BE FILLED WITH QUESTIONS.

EV’RY DAY WILL HAVE TROUBLES OF ITS OWN..

LEARN TO WALK WITH HIS SPIRIT INSIDE YOU.

TRUST HIM AND YOU’LL NEVER WALK ALONE.”

These beautiful truthful words are as applicable to us as they are to the beloved characters in Little Women. Paul knew his audience, he knew that they would face various trials and that they needed to be reminded of the Father’s love by reminding them of the blessings they had been given in Christ Jesus. I don’t know about you, but, I need this reminder daily.

Life. is. hard. “But… .

God being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alone together with Christ – by grace you have been saved – and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly placed in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus (ESV Ephesians 2:4-7).” He is kind to us no matter the difficulties we face. It sounds cliché but it’s true His love will guide, keep, and hold us.

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