Part of the Risen Christ
Listen to this daily worship
Ephesians 2: 1-10 (NRSVA)
1 You were dead through the trespasses and sins 2 in which you once lived, following the course of this world, following the ruler of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work among those who are disobedient. 3 All of us once lived among them in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of flesh and senses, and we were by nature children of wrath, like everyone else. 4 But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us 5 even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— 6 and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the ages to come he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness towards us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God— 9 not the result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life.
In my case, it is over 80 years since I gulped my first breath as a baby. I have not yet taken my last one. But centuries before that the Lord Jesus did both those things, and then, on the third day took a new breath which we have yet to take in full – but we have begun, teaches Paul, because we have been made alive with Christ. When he died, we died, and when he rose, we rose, and went into heaven with him.
Now, you have a choice. You can doff a cap respectfully to that as great theology, or you can take it on board, breathe in that wonder, live in it. You are part of a colony of heaven, not a dodgy racist colony of last century’s ‘great powers’, but an outpost of ordinary folk who are learning to breathe the air of heaven, and to do what (to be fair) a few colonialists did want to do – share good things from a good source – and we have the best source of all, the mind and heart and good purpose of God.
Today I marvel at the wonder of breath. Slow when I rest, fast when I run. I marvel at the gift of life. I marvel at the birth and life and death and resurrection and ascension of Christ.
Empower those who work to help others breathe – in hospitals, in rescue situations, through politics and Parliaments, by preaching and persuasion, with the heavenly contagion of Christian witness.
We pray through Jesus Christ, who breathes his Spirit on his friends, and promises to be with us always. Amen.
LENT FOCUS WEEK 2: PRAISE
This week we focus on ‘praise’, our human response to God. Reflect on different ways you could praise God this week, perhaps through music, art, writing, or nature. See if you can take time to consciously praise each day this week.