I secretly wish I could be a DIY blogger, but since I lack the required crafty-like skills, I’ll be blogging about a different type of project.
An Identity Project: learning who we really are in Christ, and what it means in real life.
No doubt we will discover the truth of who we are in Christ is a much better fit for us than the suffocating mold into which the world tries to shape us.
Truth about you #1: You are ACCEPTED in the Beloved.
Scriptural Evidence: “Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he has made us accepted in the beloved.” Ephesians 1:6 (KJV)
So…what does it mean? The Greek word for accepted in this verse is:
charitoō, which means to pursue with grace; to compass with favor; to embrace in the arms of grace; to honor with blessings.
It means “highly favored”; “full of grace”.
I’m not usually a King James Version person. I like the ESV much better. But the other translations don’t use accepted in this verse. Where the KJV says God made us “accepted in the Beloved”, other translations say, in various words, that “God graced us in the Beloved”.
Let the beauty of this sink in: the gut-deep longing you have to belong; the yearning for inclusion, and approval, and for acceptance…is fully met by the grace gift of God, in Christ. Our acceptance is wrapped in the shape of grace.
Can you EVEN believe this? It’s awesome. It means that the acceptance we’ve wanted since we first realized we didn’t quite “fit in” with the cool kids…is ours, in Christ. It is not a one-time “blessing” – it’s a forever thing. God’s acceptance of us in Christ has been completed. It’s not a changeable matter. There will be no mid-life review.
This warm welcome into God’s family is not granted merely because we show up with the invitation. It’s not like that situation at the heavenly gates where St. Peter checks to see if we’re on the A-list. Quite the opposite, in fact. Because it was God that pursued us, came after us, and showed up on our doorstep to personally deliver himself.
Our need for acceptance was fully met when Jesus showed up with us, for us, on earth, to take our place in his death.
All this, so that we can enjoy all the comforts and privileges of home, right smack dab in the middle of God’s kingdom. I’m sure there is a couch with your name on it. And a refrigerator stocked with your favorites.
Because in Christ, we are home. Even here on earth.
Fully accepted. Fully graced. We didn’t earn it, and we can’t work hard enough to receive it.
Living it out: So how does knowing you are accepted in the beloved look on a random Tuesday morning?
Maybe it looks like “thinking a list” of ten things that make you smile, instead of mentally rehearsing the stresses on your to-do list.
Maybe it completely changes the way you dress…knowing that labels, or skirt lines, or cleavage is not going to win true love. (And besides, you have it already.) (Love, that is. You have love already. I don’t know about the cleavage part.)
Maybe it means that you pause before lashing back with a sharply worded email, because you know another’s opinion doesn’t hold any weight on your personal value.
Maybe it means that you loosen your grip on the sales charts, because you know you are crazy-loved despite but how you rank.
Whatever it looks like, I hope this truth will play in your head all day long, like a song on repeat: ”I am accepted in the beloved. I am accepted by the One who matters most.”
Have a great Tuesday!
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