Right now I'm in the book of Ephesians. I'm struck by how many "quotables" are here, and I wonder if in fact it was written with the purpose of being a general letter to many churches to share. OK, enough with historical criticism...
Something really struck me reading chapter 2 that I haven't really noticed before. In verses 12(b) - 13 it says,
You lived in this world without God and without hope. But now you have
been united with Christ Jesus. Once you were far away from God, but now
you have been brought near to him through the blood of Christ.
I loved this because I don't think I personally would find any hope in a world without redemption. Not some going to heaven, pie-in-the-sky sort of thing, but real redemption. This is in fact what brought me to give my life following God: Redemption.
My faith gives me hope that all people, myself included, can heal. My faith gives me hope that all of us can change. My faith gives me hope that we aren't fated to our biology or our environment or our nurturing. My faith gives me hope that Christ's death and Resurrection holds up for all to experience what it means to die to the old and live in the new.
While I am reluctantly God's, I know there is something missing without the hope of Redemption. And there is no Redemption without Christ. And so, I know that my Redeemer lives because I have tasted the hope of redemption. I have experienced the second chance. I am recreated.
Thank you, God for this hope. I treasure it with all that have and with all that I am.