Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Paul's Urge to Be Eager

As I read this passage this week, two words jumped out at me:

Urge (verb) and Eager (adj).

I know I’m a dork for pointing out the parts of speech, but I’m a Home School mom; that’s what I do.

But there’s a reason I’m pointing it outJ

“I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” Eph. 4: 1-3

To me, these words stir up some emotion, some passion. It tells me that what is being said is important and there needs to be some action taken toward some goal. There’s action here…he’s urging and we’re walking. But what’s the big deal? What is Paul urging us to do?

“To walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called.”

Wow.

At first glance this sounds like an impossible task. Am I to behave in a certain way to gain God’s favor? How can I walk in a manner worthy, when I know I’m not worthy?

That’s precisely why I need a Savior!

I love the way John Piper puts it:

“This does not mean that we should try to deserve our place in God's favor. It means that we should recognize how much our place in God's favor deserves from us.

This helps me.

I’m a wife, a mom, a friend, and all the other “hats” that I wear might label me as something else. Each of these different areas of my life “call” for my very best because these are high callings indeed.

A wife, mother and friend are important jobs and are worthy of my full attention, commitment and heart. (though sometimes I may not give it my best, I am called to do so…Col 3:23)

I must strive to do my best with what He gives me to do, not to be loved by Him, but because I am already loved by Him and I desire what He desires.

How much greater is this call of God that Paul speaks of?

But what is this “calling” anyway? Back in Ephesians 1, Paul tells us:

1:4 - God chose us for himself before the world was created.

1:5 He predestined us to be his children -- and that means heirs of all our Father owns!

1:12 says, we are destined and appointed to live for the praise of his glory."

And 3:10 speaks of the unity of the body as we walk this walk to which He has called us: He has given us the mission as a church to display his wisdom even to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places.

In this particular scripture, what does this worthy walk look like?

“with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”

Another word for “bearing” is “enduring”?

It seems all we can do sometimes is just endure each other! This is a wonderful truth, though, because what it causes me to do is realize that as much as I think I’m enduring others, they, in turn have to endure ME…and that’s no easy task.

The more I see clearly my own sin, the more I am able to bear with others… with all humility, gentleness, and patience.

But why do we need to bear with each other? Can’t we just live and let live?

Here comes the other word:

Eager

eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” Eager?

We are eager for what we desire aren’t we?

How eager I am for the things of this world! Material possessions to gain, places to go and people to see! I know that I place way too much value on things that are temporal and have no eternal value whatsoever. I wish it were not so.

Am I eager to maintain the unity of the body of Christ?

This is the calling!

· Do I edify and not tear down? Eph 4:29, Js 3

· Do I think of others before myself? Phil 2:3

· Do I gossip and slander? Js 4:11, Lev 19:6

· Do I sow seeds of Peace? Js 3:18, Mt 5:9

We are the Body of Christ. “There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call—one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.” Ephesians 4:4-6

We are called to love one another to advance the kingdom!

Jesus said, “By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” Jn 13:35

There’s the motivation!

There’s the Urgency

…the Eagerness

I am Eager for the day…

“that every knee shall bow and every tongue confess to God.” Phil 2:10

Here are some great resources for deeper study through Ephesians:

John Piper

RC Sproul

Mark Driscoll

I'm "Linking Up" with:

Good Morning Girls Deep Roots at Home and A Holy Experience J

Still walking,

5 comments:

  1. Love the quote from Piper! This is something that I am constantly reminding myself of.We are not called to earn God's favor (for how can I earn what has already been poured on me?). Instead, our actions should be in response to the favor (love) that has already been shown to us. We love because He first loved us.
    Thanks for sharing! :)

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    1. Rachel,
      Thank you so much for your comment. You have incredible insight and maturity into the things of God (I took a peak at your blog as well)! It's so encouraging to see God at work in young fresh hearts and minds! He has tremendous plans for you! :)
      Mary

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  2. I am really enjoying this study from Ephesians. Loved what you shared (I taught Language Arts at a Christian School for years, so grammar grabs my attention, too.). I am so thankful that I stopped by today -- I needed to read what you shared. Very timely for me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Lyli. I'm enjoying digging deeper into Ephesians as well. I love that there are only a few verses a day to digest(I'm trying the SOAP method!) and that there are so many helpful pastors and teachers just a click away for further study.
      Have a great weekend!

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