The Letter to the Ephesian opens with the wild reality that we are saints—not because of anything we’ve done, but because God says so. It’s how we’re made. Today we’re going to dip a toe into what on earth that even means.
Paul begins his exploration of what it means to be saints, to be people shaped in the name and way of Jesus with an extraordinary claim. He writes: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.”
Right off the top, he reminds us that whatever God calls us into, God provides the means for us to do what we need to do. We are blessed with every spiritual blessing. This doesn’t mean that we’ll always have what we want, or get everything we think we should have. But it does mean that when we choose to walk in the will and way of God—the way of Jesus—we do so with the God who is extravagantly, limitlessly generous.
In so many ways we are taught to live in fear of scarcity. We are made to feel that there won’t be enough, we’ll never have enough, we’re not enough. But the way of Jesus is a way of abundance. It’s a way that turns crumbs into feasts, tiny seeds into trees whose branches touch the heavens, even something as hopeless as a grave becomes a place of new possibility and new life in the company of Jesus.
In Jesus, God has chosen to bless us with every spiritual blessing. That’s a hard thing to imagine. I don’t usually feel like I have everything I need, or that I have an abundance of spiritual blessing. But I’m learning, and the testimony of saints in every generation is that as we draw close to Jesus, we discover that we receive more than we could ever ask or imagine.
It may not look exactly like we thought, but the stuff of God rarely does.
What would be different if you moved through the world in the sure and certain knowledge that you are blessed—truly, fully, deeply blessed? Not just not bad, not that it could be worse or that you’re clearly doing better than that guy. But that you have at your disposal every spiritual blessing that heaven has to offer.
Each Sunday in my church we sing the Lord’s Prayer, which begins, “Our Father in heaven (God is our true parent, whom Jesus tells us in the gospels is the One who knows how to give good gifts to his children), hallowed be Your name (make your name holy), Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as in heaven.
When Paul tells us that we are blessed with every spiritual blessing, by our divine parent, he’s inviting us to step into the reality that the way that God’s kingdom (God’s way of love and justice and grace and goodness) comes into the world is in and through our lives. Because whenever God blesses, it’s so that we can share that blessing with others. We’ve been given every spiritual blessing that heaven has to offer, so that we can offer that same gift to others.
I hope that today you will risk knowing that you are blessed with every spiritual blessing heaven has to offer. And that you’ll share that abundance wherever you go.