Life is tough. Sometimes more than you can stand. Your body says you can’t go on. It’s an excruciating pain. Often left unnoticed, but oh so real.
You knew it wouldn’t be easy. But the realities are overwhelming. They reel in like a newsfeed of horror stories.
Your child deserts the faith.
Your life is pulled out from under you when everything you worked for is lost.
Your spouse admits the worst.
The next paycheck is not gonna cut it.
Your friends slander you, and suddenly you are very alone.
The pregnancy test is negative again.
No one understands.
Your job is a daily nightmare.
Car accident. Allergies.
Aging. Poverty. Miscarriage.
Unemployment. Paralysis. Tornado. Stress.
Sickness. Failure. Abandonment. Abuse. Persecution.
Rejoice, oh blood-bought saint, for such is the after picture.
Before? You were dead.
And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience — among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ — by grace you have been saved — and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immesaurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
Thanks to Ryan Fullerton and a message he shared, “More,” which caused me to rejoice in the truth above. Listen to 22:38-29:32 for a particularly encouraging clip or to the entirety of the message for a beautiful survey of the book of Ephesians.