Daily Devotion - September 10, 2020 - Alive, Reconciled and Citizenship

Pastor: Connie Belmore

Daily Devotion - September 10, 2020
Reading: Ephesians 2
Weekly Theme:
Beyond Forgiveness
Today: Alive, Reconciled and Citizenship

One of the number one reasons for depression is the inability to leave the past behind us and accept the forgiveness made possible through Christ. Many people tend to dwell on past events in their lives and perhaps the circumstances and situations that may have brought them to depression, and in many cases, may play the blame game, blaming themselves as well as others. It is okay to reflect on our past, but to dwell on our past and continue to relive it will never move us beyond forgiveness of ourselves and forgiveness by and of others to a life as a fruitful Christian. The apostle Paul knew firsthand what it was like to try to leave the past behind; if anyone, would be prone to continue to “beat himself up” over his past, it would be Paul. Obviously, he moved beyond forgiveness and is credited as author of 13 epistles in the New Testament to include Ephesians from which today’s passage comes.

How was Paul able to move beyond forgiveness to a productive and fruitful life as a Christian? Paul embraced being alive in Christ. After his conversion, he knew that in that moment when God called him on the road to Damascus that he had died to his sins and been raised to a new life in Christ. From that point on, Paul was God’s handiwork (Eph. 2:1-10) and was given this opportunity not because of anything he did or deserved but because of God’s grace poured out on Paul through Jesus. Paul was then able to accept that he had been reconciled with God through Christ from a life without hope to one of hope and peace, no longer filled with hostility, and one in which he had access to the Father, by the Holy Spirit (Eph. 2:11-14). Finally, Paul became a fellow citizen and a member of the household of faith with fellow Christians (apostles) as the foundation and Jesus Christ as the cornerstone. This household of faith (made of people and not stones) is not comprised of modern ideas but is built on a spiritual heritage that dates back to the early apostles and prophets of the Christian church. The role of the church is to continue to be disciple-makers and kingdom builders, not to preserve a fruitless institution that shifts with the wind and with every little change in the surrounding culture.

We are able to move beyond forgiveness when we open our hearts and minds to the movement of the Holy Spirit which reminds us that we have died to our sin and been raised to new life, that we are reconciled with God though Christ and that we have embraced our role as fellow citizens of the household of faith, commanded to go forth and make disciples. Are you moving beyond forgiveness to being alive in Christ?

Dear God, thank you for giving me new life, reconciliation and citizenship in your kingdom. Help me to continue to move beyond forgiveness to living fully into the life you have in store for me and to embrace my citizenship in Your kingdom. In the name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.

 

 

 
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