To the saints in Ephesus,
the faithful in Christ Jesus:
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
~ Ephesians 1:1-2
You’ve got mail! The return address is very clearly marked. The contents are very valuable and insured for their full value. But it is addressed to a person who is and continues to be a “saint”, or another way to say that: one who is faithful/faith-full in Christ Jesus.
You may think…I’m not sure that I should open this letter; I am not at all sure that the contents are for me. After all, nothing in my life suggests that I am a “saint” by any stretch of the imagination. My relationship with Jesus is not so much “faith-full” as it is “doubt-full.”
So, do I need to write in big, bold letters, “Return to sender?” Or perhaps write, “NFA” (no forwarding address) because I don’t know anyone—anyone other than Jesus himself—who is a “faithful/faith-full” saint.
But go ahead and open it anyway. The contents of this letter, the “grace and peace…from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ,” are not gifts that come to us if we are “saints” and if we are faithful. These gifts declare us to be saints. These gifts empower our faith. These gifts inspire and impel our faithfulness.
“Grace” is the love in the heart of our Triune God that causes him to shower blessings on us when we don’t deserve them. This love has surrounded us from eternity and will lead us to an eternity with God himself.
When the love of God the Father caused him to send his one and only Son, Jesus died on the cross to be our peace, to tear down the walls that separate us from God and to bring us back into his family, reconciled, made one, holy, chosen, and dearly loved. (See Ephesians 2:11-22 and 1 Peter 2:8-9.)
You’ve got mail! Yes, it is really for you! And, by the way, you can forward this letter repeatedly to everyone in the world. Grace and peace is for them too!
Prayer: Gracious Father, you sent your Son to show us your grace and to bring us your peace. Help us treasure these precious gifts of your love and share them in love with everyone. Amen.