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My response to Ephesians…Live a life of love!

Tonight as I sit at my computer resting from celebrating my Savior’s resurrection with my family, I look over the verses we have just covered the past 12 weeks together and these verses pop out at me:

Remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. But in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.” –Ephesians 2:12-13

At one time I was without hope…..without God.

At one time I was far away from God…but Jesus brought me near.

Thank you Jesus for the hope and relationship we have with you! Though once we were far from you, thank you for bringing us near through your precious blood.

Thank you for living and dying a life of love for us!

For me personally the one verse that sums up Ephesians would be Ephesians 5:1

“Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”

Be an imitator…be like Christ.

How did Christ live his life? He lived a life of love.

He loved us so much he sacrificed everything…..HE became the offering.

I want to imitate Christ with my life as a wife, mom, daughter, friend…..as a sister in Christ.

Be imitators of God….live a life of love….

As I take my place in God’s family…I need to live a life of love.

As a child of God who has been adopted into his family by grace…Eph 2:8

As I go through life with my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ…I need to live a life of love.

With my brothers and sisters in Christ, be humble, gentle, patient….bear with one another in love. Eph 4:2

As I pursue my role as a wife …I need to live a life of love.

Wives, submit to your husband, as to the LORD.Eph 5:22

As a daughter and a mother …I need to live a life of love.

Honor your father and mother…do not exasperate your children…Eph 6:4

The whole book of Ephesians is about living our lives loving others, and loving God. Paul concludes by  encouraging us to be STRONG in the LORD and His mighty power….we will have struggles….living a life of love and sacrifice isn’t easy. We will need God’s help. There is a battle going on and we are the targets. We are reminded in verse 6:12 that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world…”

My advice to all of us….

Pray….work on making it a habit to be in constant communion with God.
Focus……focus on Jesus and don’t look around at what others are doing,  just stay focused on him and in his Word.
Love….imitate Christ and live a life of love.

 

Thank you again from the bottom of MY heart for joining me these past 12 weeks as we have studied the book of Ephesians together! You are a blessing to me!

 

Please join us this summer as we study the life of the Proverbs 31 woman!!!! God has great things in store for us this summer!

For more information about our summer study, click here!

Until next time…

 

Love God Greatly!!!

 

 

 

{Week 9} Live a Life of LOVE

Live a life of LOVE!

I just wanted a few moments of “alone time”….just a few moments to get some things done around the house. As a mom of 3 children 5 and under, finding those moments can be difficult. There is always something else that needs to be cleaned, picked-up or put away…always something or someone else who needs my attention. Such was the case the other day. I was busy. I had a lot on my plate and no time for detours. Ever been there?

I was busy getting ready to “serve” and I didn’t feel I had time to stop, slow down and serve yet another “need” that was wanting my attention. Only when I slowed down and actually looked at who was wanting my attention…..it was my sweet, sensitive Addie. What was her need? She wanted some mommy time. She wanted to sit in my lap and be held and loved on. She wanted me to read and play with her. She needed her cup filled up and she wanted me to be the pitcher. I had a choice. Do I sacrifice my wants, my desires? Do I sacrifice my to-do list, my “can’t get this all done if I stop now” feeling of needing everything to be just in the right place? Do I sacrifice my desire of wanting my house to look perfect?  Or do I choose HER?

What would Jesus do? This week we read Ephesians 5:1-2 “Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”

How did Christ love? He gave himself up as an offering and sacrifice to God.

I’m learning in life that love and obedience have more to do with my actions than my feelings. Even when I don’t feel like loving…..do it anyway. Even when I don’t feel like obeying….do it anyway. Even if I don’t feel like stopping and meeting a need….do it anyway. Feelings are misleading. They change depending on the day or circumstance…..but God’s truth never does. He calls us to live a life of love.

What does living a life of love look like?

We are called to imitate Christ. Jesus sacrificed his life so we might live. His love for us is the reason he was obedient….even unto death. Loving others well involves loving sacrifice. Sacrificing our wants and desires for the better of others, whether its our husbands, children, family or friends. Living our life in sacrifice and service. If we are to be imitators of Christ, we need to love and sacrifice like he did.

This is not always an easy road to travel. It’s counter to how the world tells us to live. The world tells us to live for ourselves, to please our wants and desires. That “if mama ain’t happy, ain’t no buddy happy.”

Taking this journey will look different for each individual. But our life of love needs to move beyond our feelings of affection for another to self-sacrificing service for another.

If we are to imitate Christ, then we need to serve like Christ. Jesus was a servant leader. He washed dirty, smelly, tired feet as a service to his disciples. He saw a need and he met it. As mothers and wives we are given the same opportunities. How will you be Jesus to your family today?

That day I chose to sacrifice my wants and desires.

I stopped.

I looked.

I held.

I listened.

I hugged and kissed that little girl.

I became a “pitcher” that day and Jesus used me to fill her back up.

To be honest with you……I wouldn’t want my life any other way.

Memory verse: You select it this week! Which verse is most important for you to memorize?

This week read: Ephesians 5:1-20

Digging a little deeper: For those of you who would like to learn more about these verses this week, I’ve provided a few resources below for you to use to help you…….dig a little deeper!

1. John MacArthur

a. Ephesians 5:1-2 Walking in Love
b. Ephesians 5:3-7 Walking in Love pt 2
c. Ephesians 5:8-14 Living in the Light
d. Ephesians 5:15 Walking in Wisdom
e. Ephesians 5:16-17 Walking in Wisdom pt 2
f. Ephesians 5:18 Be Not Drunk with Wine
g. Ephesians 5:18 Be Not Drunk with Wine pt 2
h. Ephesians 5:18 Be Not Drunk with Wine pt 3
i. Ephesians 5:18 Be Filled with the Spirit
j. Ephesians 5:18-19 Be Filled with the Spirit pt 2
k. Ephesians 5:19 Be Filled with the Spirit pt 3

2. John Piper

a. Ephesians 5:3-6 The Enthronement of Desire
b. Ephesians 5:11 Exposing the Dark Word of Abortion
c. Ephesians 5:15-20 Urgency & Gratitude
d. Ephesians 5:17-20 Singing & Making Melody to Lord

Until next time…

Love God Greatly!

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