Wake Up Smiling

OPENING PRAYER

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us… with every spiritual blessing” (Eph. 1:3).

 

Read: EPHESIANS 1:1–14

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God,

To God’s holy people in Ephesus, the faithful in Christ Jesus:

2 Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Praise for Spiritual Blessings in Christ
3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding, 9 he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.

11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, 12 in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. 13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.

 

 

Reflect: THINK ABOUT YOUR CLOSEST RELATIONSHIPS. HOW ARE THEY MAINTAINED?

This whole letter is a masterful exaltation of all that God has done through his Son, Jesus Christ. A strong thread runs through the letter describing how Jesus brings everything together in perfect unity. In him we find integration at a personal level and togetherness at a corporate level in the church.

If you were asked to outline the main blessings of being a Christian I wonder what you would list? What do you think of Paul’s list? Go through it carefully and notice how comprehensive it is.

These blessings are rooted in the past and hold certainty for the future. They deal with our deepest needs: to know that we are loved and belong, and to be forgiven. They speak of the most amazing truth in the world: that the living God desires a relationship with us and has done everything needed to make it possible.

The actions of God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit are all in our favor. And through those actions he gains glory. There is nothing reluctant about God’s love for us. Read this passage again and notice the kindness and generosity of our God.

 

APPLY

God has lavished his grace on us; let us lavish praise on him.

 

CLOSING PRAYER

Father, thank You for Your incredible plan to adopt me as Your own child.

 

Syndicated via Scripture Union. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
 

Terry Schneider