A Model of Maturity
Scripture Reading — Ephesians 1:1-10
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us ... Ephesians 1:3—
Girls learn to be mothers by watching their own mothers. Boys learn to become fathers by imitating their fathers. All of us learn about life through our parents and other adults. We learn from modeling.
In Ephesians Paul explains a lot about Christian maturity. The book of Ephesians is Paul's only letter that does not address a specific problem or issue. The letter is a robust model for how we can grow in Christ.
Paul begins by praising God. Paul knows he belongs to God. He knows he is part of something big, glorious, and true. The Heidelberg Catechism puts it this way: "I . . . belong-body and soul, in life and in death-to my faithful Savior Jesus Christ... In fact, all things must work together for my salvation" (Q&A 1).
Our salvation is not a matter of luck or chance. People who are redeemed have not won some divine lottery. It has been God's idea all along to make us part of what he is doing in this world. God is working all things together to shape and mold us as models of his grace.
Paul recognized that God blessed him with the wonderful gift of salvation. And in Jesus, God created the conditions for us to become saints who have experienced God's grace and peace.
Praise is our response to God's goodness. Praise is how we model maturity in Christ.
<p>Jesus, "mold me and make me after thy will, while I am waiting, yielded, and still." For your great salvation, Lord, may I always be thankful and overflowing with praise. Amen.</p>