Theme of the Week: Who You Are – Characteristics of our Identity in Christ
Bible Verse: He predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. Ephesians 1:5-6
Scripture Reading: Ephesians 1:3-11
Quick, how many movies about orphans can you name? Go ahead and cheat, Google it. Hint, there are a lot. From Annie to Oliver to Blindside to Batman and Despicable Me, there are many movies about orphans.
From the sheer volume of movies, it’s obvious that something about the stories of orphans fascinates us. Whether it is the struggle to survive on their own or overcoming their fear of abandonment to find a place to belong, there is something compelling about the journey of an orphan to overcome their circumstances. It probably has something to do with the vicarious nature of movies in general. We watch them and envision ourselves. When it comes to orphans, we see ourselves in the indomitable spirit of the orphan or in the hope and love that comes when family is finally found.
We may not know the physical reality of being an orphan in the same way so many others around the world do. We may have had the benefit of having a family from our earliest memories (and may have taken that for granted—or perhaps the opposite was true that our family history is one we would rather forget). But since Scripture says that we are adopted, part of the way we need to understand ourselves is one-time orphans.
We belong to a family that we cannot always see and didn’t even know we needed or didn’t have. Have you ever been given something that you didn’t know you needed, but after you got it, it made all the difference in the world? That’s what our adoption to sonship through Jesus is like. For a long time, we didn’t know we needed to be adopted. We didn’t see that we were lost, without a family, scratching and scraping to survive.
God adopted us. He brought us into his family. Not only does that tell us how much we are wanted (see yesterday’s devotional), but it also tells us something about the God who adopted us. He is generous and loving. He has, by His own choice, adopted us and given us everything that comes with the privilege of being family—freely giving us His grace. We are adopted and belong to God’s family.
Prayer: Father, thank you for bringing me into your family. Thank you for freely giving me your grace through Jesus so that I can belong. Help me to live as your son.
Reflect: What does it mean to you that you are adopted by God? Did you ever feel like an orphan? Are there times when you still do? How do you show God that you are grateful for your adoption? How do you show that you belong in God’s family?
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