In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance wIn him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 7-8athat he lavished on us.” Eph 1:8
The forgiveness of your sins is given to you by God in accordance with the riches of His grace. Just think about that for a moment…your forgiveness is not given in accordance with your faith, your good works or your ability to live up to some gold standard.
"Yo are no longer a slave but a son and if a son then an heir of God through Christ!" (Gal 4:7)
Our identity as children of God is our defining feature; it affects how we view everything. As a child of God your relationship to your Father is not based on your efforts or your ability but on the love of your Dad.
ou shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free” John 8:32 (NKJV)
Have you ever been on holiday and upon your return thought to yourself ‘Here we go, back to the real world’? There is something nice about the ability to have a break and get away from the normal routine of things but we also realise that living like we do when we are on holiday is not the real world.
“He took our sin-dead lives and made us alive in Christ. He did all this on his own, with no help from us!”Eph2:5-6 (MSG)
The phenomenal position in which we find ourselves –honoured by God, loved and accepted by Him, is nothing to do with how good we are. It’s the same for everyone; the powerful, the imprisoned, the rich and famous, the obscure and destitute, poets, artists, slaves and vagabonds, priests, prostitutes, diplomats and drug-dealers…everyone of us accepted not because of what we have done or who we are but because God is love
“The Lord bless you and keep you;the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you;the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace” Numbers 6:24-26
This blessing, which God told Moses to instruct the Levite priests to speak over the Children of Israel paints the picture of God turning His face to look at His people and bless them. The idea of a personal God not some distant deity was central to their identity as the chosen people of God. The idea here is of God lifting them in His arms much in the same way as a delighted Father might pick up his child and looking at them with joy.
[Rev 19:16 NLT] on his robe at his thigh was written this title: King of all kings and Lord of all lords.
Have you ever wondered what this phrase, King of Kings, means? It means exactly what it says; Jesus is the King of Kings. Who are these kings He rules over? You and me are kings; yes you and me. We run ourselves down and think little of ourselves. Yet Jesus has made us royalty
“The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7
Have you ever had to deal with someone who has told you one thing to your face and done something else when they are not with you? It can be hard deal with. Doing what is right is one thing but doing what is right for the right reason is another
“But to those who embraced Him and took hold of His name were given the authority to become who they really are – the sons of God!” John 1:12 (Passion Translation)
We were made to be part of God’s family, created by God to have relationship with Him. This verse reminds us that when we embrace the person of Jesus and we take hold of His name then we have authority to be who we really are
Jhn 1:12 NLT But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God..
When we follow Jesus and become the children of God, He becomes our big brother. There is a strong bond of belonging. He loves us deeply. That means He is totally committed to us and will always be there to look out for us. He will stand up for us against the accuser who attacks us with shame and guilt
John 1:29 “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.”
The men who heard this were brought up in a culture that understood what “Passover Lamb” meant. This was no lamb that was bought at the butcher’s. This was a living lamb, bought from the Shepherds and taken into the family. It was loved and cared for before being taken to the temple to be slaughtered.
[Mat16:15NLT] Then he asked them, "But who do you say I am?"
This Week I am asking the question, “who is Jesus?” We tell people that we are Born Again Christians, who love Jesus. But what does that mean to them? Do they know who this Jesus is that we talk about? Do we even understand who He is?
“For you are becoming progressively acquainted with and recognizing more strongly and clearly the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ…” 2 Corinthians 8:9a AMP
I often use the phrase ‘every day’s a school day’. Do you ever feel that? You think you have everything sussed when you suddenly get a new piece of information that changes your understanding of what you’re doing. It keeps us on our toes and keeps life interesting.
How boring would it be if you met someone and after that first meeting you parted knowing everything
“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17 NIV
A few weeks ago a dear friend from my schooldays sadly passed away very suddenly. It was a very large funeral and many old friends from those days were there. Some had travelled from England to be there and a few of them I hadn’t seen since l left school
The Lord was with Joseph so that he prospered…the Lord gave him success in everything he did.” Genesis 39:3
I recently moved into a new job role in my organisation. It’s challenging and builds on my existing skills but what’s most exciting is – I didn’t go looking for it! It came to me. I had been asking God for a while for a change but had also realised He wanted me to be content where I was and be the very best I could be in that situation. To ‘bloom where I was planted’ as the saying goes.
God places the solitary in families and gives the desolate a home in which to dwell” Psalm 68:6 NIV
Loneliness is a reality for many of us. It’s not always a constant companion but there are periods of time when we can all feel like we are isolated – whether we live alone or not. Indeed, the intensity of our loneliness can be exacerbated by the proximity of others. I have found myself looking at Facebook and wondering why everyone seems to be having a much more interested, connected, engaged life than mine.
“You gave abundant showers, O God;you refreshed your weary inheritance.” Psalm 68:9 NIV
When I lived in Africa we lived on the Highveld. It only rained in the summer so we had long dry winters. From June to September it never rained – the ground got progressively drier and you could feel the air drying out your skin and hair. I longed for rain but I knew I had to wait. For an Irish girl this was a novel experience – actually wanting rain
“My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, 5so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power.” 1Cor 2:4-5
It’s so easy to try and do everything yourself. Many of us are very good at lots of things – God has given you gifts that you use everyday. The problem is that sometimes we think that the benefits we see from exercising our gifts is because we are so good.
"I will praise the name of God with song And magnify Him with thanksgiving."
When I was a kid my parents bought me a small microscope for one of my birthdays. It was probably an attempt by them to take my eyes off games for a while and experiment with something new. For a toy, I remember it being quite effective
"When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father's commandments and remain in his love. I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!" John 15 10-11
If you have children, raising them in today’s society can be challenging. We all love our kids and want to protect them and see them flourish, but to do so we sometimes have to restrict them doing what they want