Monday, November 17, 2008

It is not about me...or more on Ephesians

I've been reading the first chapter of Ephesians and trying to really have it sink in. The first 14 verses have really hit me with a theme... It is not about me!

Paul even starts out by pointing out that it isn't about him. In verse one he states he is an apostle "by the will of God" Then verse by verse he shows us how it is not about us.

In verse 3 we find we already have every spiritual blessing.

In verse 4 we find He chose us before creation began.

In verse 5 we find it is His pleasure and will that motivates our predestination.

In verse 6 we find He has given us his grace freely.

In verse 7 we find our redemption and forgiveness correlates to His riches of grace.

None of this has anything to do with what I have done or will do. None of it has anything to do with my talents or potential. It isn't about who I am or can be, it is about what He wants to do with me. But there is more...

In verse 9 we find we now know the mystery of His will.

In verse 10 we find His will is to bring all things together under one head.

In verse 11 we find we are chosen according to his plan and purpose.

In verse 12 we find we He has done this for the praise of His glory.

In verse 13 & 14 we find we are marked and His possession again for the praise of His glory.

None of this has anything to do with my plans. He didn't choose me for my benefit. It is not about what I want or need, it is about what He wants to with my life.

My first thought was how wonderful. A feeling of freedom filled me. But my immediate second thought was "Oh, it really isn't about me." I read this passage and realize that I so often live like it is about me; "God, I want to do this so please help me," or "God I don't like this please take it away." In a way it made me feel like I'm not really that important. I mean God could do without me. Isn't that bad for my self-esteem?

But that is where that freedom comes in. God could "do without me" but he chose to "do with me." How cool is that? My talents and potential aren't critical to His success. I am free to just be what He makes me. My plan may fly out the window, but God's plan is the one that will have success. My failures may just be exactly the achievement God is going for.

If I can only remember this I could eliminate much of the worry and fretting from my life. Growing up in public schools in the 70's, and 80's they spent a lot of time telling us that we were "free to be whatever we wanted to be, and free to do whatever we wanted to do." I think a lot of us were let down when we discovered that in reality our plans often don't work.

But I want to remember that I'm truly free. Free to be what He makes me and go where He leads me.

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