Here are some verses to uplift, encourage and challenge you this 5th Sunday of Lent as our world struggles with the pandemic of Covid-19:
God is Sovereign: Psalm 103:19 “The Lord has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all.” 2 Chronicles 20:6 ““O Lord, God of our fathers, are you not God in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. In your hand are power and might, so that none is able to withstand you.” John 10:29 “My Father, who has given (my sheep- believers) to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.” Acts 17:26 “And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place,” Each of these verses shows God’s Sovereign power. He is Creator God and there is none greater. Once we belong to Him, nothing and no one can take us away from Him. God is the determiner of mankind and those things He allows to come into our lives. Like the plagues of the Old Testament, pray, pray, pray for God’s mercy in these days of Covid-19. Humble yourselves and turn back to Him and seek Him and His forgiveness. “We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are. 23 For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.” Romans 3:22-23 God promises restoration and forgiveness if: if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14
Here are the truths we found in God’s Word from Ephesians 4:17-5:20this last week. They are rich and bring joy and challenge to the believer as we endeavor to walk with Him each day. Because Christ died on the cross and rose from the dead:
I can be a new creation in Jesus! Ephesians 4:17-24
We are made for righteous actions and thoughts towards ourselves and others which bring joy to God. Ephesians 4:25-32
We can be imitators of Jesus and have lives filled with love. Ephesians 5:1-2
I can choose light and life with Him. Ephesians 5:3-8
His light can be seen in me. Ephesians 5:9-14
How I live my life for Him matters. Ephesians 5:15-20
May you have a Sunday filled with His love and be able to spend time praying and mediating on His Sovereignty and His wonderful truths from Ephesians.
Walk with me during Lent through the book of Ephesians as we meditatively think about all that we have and are in Christ. Let’s look at the unity of the body of believers growing there as Paul preached and taught for 2 years. Later John also came to Ephesus and lived among the believers. We will see the aspects of who we are in Christ, what place the body of believers called the church is to God and finish with the wonderful words about the armor available to us in Christ. Each day we will see the amazing provisions and position we have because Christ died on the cross and rose from the dead.
As we begin this Ash Wednesday, let’s look at Ephesians 1:1-2. Paul introduces himself in the letter, tells who he’s writing to and pronounces a preliminary greeting that is typical of his writing.
“Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God,
To the saints who are in Ephesus, and are faithful in Christ Jesus:
2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.”
Put yourself in Ephesus and become one of the believers who received this letter from the Apostle Paul. He is addressing you as a saint, a faithful believer and he is sending greetings of grace and peace from God. Do you think of yourself as a saint? The New Testament repeatedly refers to believers as ‘saints’. He also attributes faithfulness to their walk of faith. How would you describe your daily walk with Jesus? Are you faithful? Paul also sends you grace, which is God’s unmerited favor, and His peace. What precious gifts these are. How will you use or experience God’s favor today? Will you rest in His peace? As Ephesians opens we see that because Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead, we can be His saints and faithfully, walk in His grace and experiencing His peace. Praise God!
Walk with me towards the cross, contemplating our sinfulness and His blameless character. Join me in daily meditation and prayer for these coming 40 days of repentance and focus on who God desires us to be because of Jesus and His sacrifice.
Each year I blog daily during the Lenten Season. Writing for 40 days causes me to be committed and focused on my Savior, and it is not so easily accomplished that I can fake my way through it. I need to rely upon Jesus to see me through the 40 days.
As Lent approaches each year, I pray about what message God wants me to focus on as I look to the cross. This year He has led me to the book of Ephesians. It has 6 chapters and I plan to look at selected verses during the 6 weeks of Lent. As a whole Ephesians is a book filled with encouragement for Christian living and unity that God desires to be present in the church. I am looking forward to this journey beginning tomorrow on Ash Wednesday February 26.