Posted by: glorifyhim1 | February 11, 2013

Accepted!

This week I stumbled across a reminder in God’s Word that actually caused tears to spring to my eyes. I had read it and had rejoiced over its truth before, but this time the Scripture passage spoke not only to my head, but also to my heart. It was as if God were looking right into my soul and speaking to me personally. Let me share this passage with you.

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, 5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.

 (Ephesians 1:3-6)

As powerful as this passage is, the words that spoke to my heart this week were “by which He made us accepted.” Accepted! Is there anything that most of us crave more than to be accepted? Think of the things we do, the lengths to which we go, in order to be accepted by others. Yet this passage assures us that God Himself made us accepted through Jesus Christ. We are accepted not because we measure up to God’s standards – not because we meet all of His expectations – not because we do everything right and never mess up – not because of anything that we do to earn it. We are accepted because of what He did in Christ. He made us accepted!

How much that differs from the way we try to find acceptance in the world!

  • We try to earn acceptance.
  • We try to win approval.
  • We allow our value to be determined by the opinions of others.

The way we dress, the things we do, the places we go, and the things we possess are just a few of the ways in which we try to earn acceptance and win approval from others. We allow our worth and value to be based upon the way others view us.

In the world we try to win acceptance, but with God we are made accepted. And as the verse above declares, with acceptance comes spiritual blessing (see Ephesians 1:3). What does that acceptance and blessing look like?

  • God receives us and accepts us as His children.

“But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name; who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:12-13).

  • God forgives and redeems us.

“In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence” (Ephesians 1:7-8).

  • He entrusts us with knowledge of His will as He reveals His plan and the deepest desire of His heart.

“Having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ” (Ephesians 1:9-10).

  • God gives us hope as He reminds us of our inheritance because of Christ.

“In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will” (Ephesians 1:11).

  • He indwells us with His Spirit, giving us constant access to His help, comfort, discernment, wisdom, guidance, and joy; and the ever-present reminder that we belong to Him!

“In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory” (Ephesians 1:13-14).

It is really hard to comprehend the difference these spiritual blessings can make in our lives. When we are already made accepted by God through Christ Jesus, we have no need to compete for acceptance and approval from others. When I am a child of God, forgiven and redeemed by His Son; when He makes known to me the deepest desire and longing of His heart; when He assures me of my inheritance and confirms His promises through His Spirit; my position is sure and I am complete in Him.

God’s acceptance delivers me from constantly trying to meet someone else’s expectations and from trying to win approval from others. Likewise, His acceptance assures me that even when I mess up, God does not remove His love and acceptance. He stands ready to receive, forgive, and restore me. Such acceptance sets me free to be the person that God created me to be. It makes me want to please Him in all that I do – not to earn or win His approval, but simply to tell Him I love Him!

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