“Who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 1:4)
Ungratefulness wears an ugly dress in every culture. When a gift is offered, regardless of the price tag attached, gratitude should always be present. This is especially true when the gift is priceless, defying description in any language. Perhaps the only proper response is to express our thanks in ways that would delight the giver.
In the opening of Ephesians, God includes us in the remarkable truth that “every spiritual blessing” is ours because of Christ Jesus. The Father adopted us with great love and granted us the rights of a beloved child all because of Christ’s sacrificial work. The blood Jesus willingly spilled on the cross bought us the freedom of redemption from slavery to sin. And because the Lord’s grace overflows in limitless ways, he forgives us for every single shortcoming, for every failure, for every single transgression on our part (See Ephesians 1:5-7).
As if these life-giving truths were not enough, the apostle Paul tells us over twenty-five times that we are securely and permanently positioned “in Christ.” We are “blessed in Christ…chosen in Christ…have an inheritance in Christ…and were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit (See Ephesians 1:3-14) just to mention a few of the incredible gifts God provides for us “in Christ.” This security that we have “in Christ” should make us wonder why we normally explain our salvation by saying that “we received Jesus into our hearts.” Surely it might be more accurate to say that Christ received us into his heart of love!
Where do we start to thank the Father? How do we express gratitude to our Savior? Perhaps we should begin by admitting our blindness in overlooking the incomparable gifts, our failure to appreciate, consider, and celebrate all that he has provided for us. Maybe we should adjust our thinking, change, and work on developing the enthusiastic habit of thanking the Lord every chance we get.
We can honor the Lord and bring delight to his heart if we become people who are known for being thankful, joyful, and gracious for all the blessings from God’s good hands. As our hearts continually celebrate his goodness, may we open our lips and share our “spiritual blessings” with all those around.
Elizabeth A. Mitchell
“Christ received us into his heart of love.” Thank you, Elizabeth, for this beautiful thought.