Have you ever received a gift, only to find another gift hidden beneath? Not too long ago Luke, my 4-year-old grandson, watched me open a present.
He danced from foot to foot as I pulled out a gift.
“Gaga, did you see it. Gaga, keep looking!”
And there it was. Nestled at the bottom of the bag was a bracelet made of colorful pipe cleaners.
It was perfect.
It’s perfect because Luke made it. It’s perfect because he was thinking of me when he did.
Yesterday when I was studying our passage, I found a small treasure in the bottom of “the bag.”
I had discovered that the mystery that Paul was talking about in Ephesians 1:verse 9 was a long-standing plan. This plan (Verse 10) was redemption. We were ALL chosen to be His and because of Jesus’ gift of the cross, we have that opportunity (verse 11).
That’s a beautiful gift.
It’s the reason God has pursued mankind from the beginning. It’s why He chose to love us, even in our sin. This type of love goes against our natural feelings, so we may even struggle to receive it.
So Much Good Stuff!
I thought the gift was unpacked, and yet there was more. At the bottom, nestled in verse 13.
I’m marked. So are you.
We are identified as His.
Some of the rarest diamonds known to mankind are marked. That mark is unseen by the human eye, but the master jeweler can place it in the right light and there it is.
If it’s lost, it can be returned to the rightful owner.
If it’s been sullied by wear and tear, that mark still identifies it as valuable.
I don’t know about you, but there have been moments when I make faith incredibly complex. The fact that I’m marked — identified, accepted, redeemed, known — sloughs all my weighty and man-made confusion away to simply walk into His love.
It also spurs me to see people — all people, regardless of whether they are like me with all my westernized doctrine and views of faith (God, continue to transform me) — as pursued by God and of such great value that He sent His Son to rescue and restore them to the family.
Lord, change the way I seek you and the way I see people.
Is that your prayer too?
- Read Ephesians 1:9-14.
- Settle into verse 13 for the day. Write this phrase next to it in your Bible: I’m marked!
- If you start to make faith complex, whisper these words to yourself: I’m marked!
- If you see someone who is struggling, remind yourself that God is pursuing them. Pray for that person. See the value that God sees in them.
- Maybe today you’ll have the opportunity to remind someone else of His love.