That's the Book: Ephesians
I spend a lot of time talking to my girls. This weekend I talked about pre-algebra and the order of operations. Mind numbing; and I like math. We also talked about LOL dolls and the relative merits of the color change or glitter series. I tried explaining that something mass produced in China and sold in every retail store in America can not be labeled "ultra rare". They don't believe me. As I'm sitting here writing about the book of Ephesians I"m wondering what conversations they'll remember when they are grown.
The traveling pastor Paul spent two years preaching in the town of Ephesis. The book of Ephesians is a letter he wrote to this church years later when Paul was in prison. He was reminding them about all the lessons he taught when he was in their city. If I was writing my girls a message to keep and ponder and reinforce what I had hoped they'd learned while I was their mom Ephesians would be a beautiful model.
Oh how your dad and I love you! We're proud of you. We cherish you. And the best news of all? God in heaven loves you too. He included us all in his family. Don't ever forget. Remember when I used to tell you every day I loved you? Sometimes you'd say "Mom, I know! I know!". God is the same. He throws his love at us every way imaginable.
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, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. Ephesians 1: 3-6
I pray for you every day. I pray you'll grow and know and see what matters. What your future holds. I pray you'll be amazed by the crazy big power of God and how it is available to you.
I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. Ephesians 1: 18-19
You know my loves, Dad and I aren't perfect. And frankly, neither are you. Thank goodness for grace! We get in on God's plan because He gave us himself. Oh Happy Day! Guess what? He saved us all and has a plan. Don't you love a purpose? Mom sure does.
For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no on may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them. Ephesians 2:8-10
Mama has lots of big ideas. So do you my passionate and energetic little misses. Don't forget God has more and bigger ideas. And He LOVES to show up when Mom is out of options, in over my head, and needing help. Its that upside down thing we talk about. God does his best work when it seems darkest. But don't be scared. He is able to do all those big amazing ideas better than we ever planned. Whew. He is so good.
So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God. Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3: 17-21
Girls, I pray you have lots of opportunities, wide experiences and learn about the world. Gotta tell you though. Its dark out there. Some people get lost. Girls I want you to be wise and on a solid foundation. As you grow, watch and be careful.
As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love. Ephesians 4:14-16
If mom has some advice about life its this; Be nice. Let go of junk. Choose grace.
Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. Ephesians 4:31-32
Listen, I know this is a lot. Some days you'll be tired and cranky. Mom has those days. Sometimes I yell and snap and sigh and complain. But less so as I get to know Jesus better. I'm so grateful that God has given us tools to accomplish these goals. Like all the other tools in life - they only work if you use them. Stand firm to the end. It'll be worth it.
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the full armor of God so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of Salvation, which is the word of God. Ephesians 6:10-17
My precious daughters. We talk about lots of stuff. Homework and housework. Toys and friends. Rules and rights. But these words? The ones about Jesus and God and grace? Remember these.
I was able to go interview one of the founders of the Bible Project, and now I'm an even bigger fan!! Watch this! Now!
This is pretty funny. God totally has a sense of humor and my guess is he's a fan of The Skit Guys. Watch and laugh.
I love Jesus. I think my two daughters can change the world. I think you can too.
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