4-5 However, God is rich in mercy. He brought us to life with Christ while we were dead as a result of those things that we did wrong. He did this because of the great love that he has for us. You are saved by God’s grace! 6 And God raised us up and seated us in the heavens with Christ Jesus. 7 God did this to show future generations the greatness of his grace by the goodness that God has shown us in Christ Jesus.
8 You are saved by God’s grace because of your faith. This salvation is God’s gift. It’s not something you possessed. 9 It’s not something you did that you can be proud of. 10 Instead, we are God’s accomplishment, created in Christ Jesus to do good things. God planned for these good things to be the way that we live our lives.
“What do you want to be when you grow up?” This is a question you are asked by adults when you are young. All through school, children try out different interests and discover their talents. During our early years, we are all looking to discover and find our purpose in life. Later in life, we may find ourselves on a path that wasn’t what we originally planned to do. People facing retirement joke that they are still trying to figure out what they want to be when they “grow up.” As children of God, we live and find our purpose for living through our salvation in Jesus Christ and our service to others.
Before our salvation through Jesus, we were dead to sin and craved a deeper relationship with God. But through God’s rich mercy, we are brought into new life in Christ and have a rich relationship with God. We are saved by God’s grace because of our faith in Jesus, not by anything we can do on our own, and not by accruing any merit from doing good works. We are transformed by the loving work of God, through Jesus. We are each God’s accomplishment, created to do good things.
Like a great work of art, God has created each of us with different gifts and talents. The Holy Spirit is at work within us to help us grow spiritually, and the love of God flows from us, so that we respond by wanting to do good things.
As children of God, we know our purpose for living. We are saved by grace through faith, to love others, and to follow the example of Jesus. This is not easy to do and we often fail, but should not lose heart because God is always with us.
By Jeneene Reduker
For Pondering & Prayer
Right now our lives have become totally disrupted, but this offers us an opportunity to stop and ask ourselves: are we living the life that God planned for us? Do we feel the love of God over-flowing from us, so that we want to do good things? Wherever you find yourself in life at this moment, you can still follow the example of Jesus. What good things can you do today?
Prayer: Merciful and loving God, we give you thanks for the love you have shown us through Jesus. During this difficult time, we ask you for strength to live the life that you have planned for us, and we ask that the way we live our lives, doing good things, will help others and bring you glory. Amen.