Let’s face it – who isn’t stressed in some way these days? I know I am! Stress is one of those “can’t beat it” kind of things that really isn’t good for you, but is seemingly impossible to escape sometimes. The fact is though, as Christians we don’t need to be stressed – really and really – we are too blessed to be stressed! Amen!
Why too blessed to be stressed, you ask?
I was reading in Ephesians today (chapter 1, verses 3-14) and thought it best to share with others. Take a second to read it through on your own, then let’s take it verse by verse:
God’s Rich Blessings
Praise the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavens.
Too Blessed to be Stressed because God has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavens.
Smallgroupchurches.com published an article listing the 15 spiritual blessings that we are given through these verses by Christ through His redemption. Only the first 12 the author lists are part of the scripture verses I would like to focus on. They are:
- Chosen before the foundation of the world (from verse 4)
- Holy and blameless (verse 4)
- In His love (verse 4)
- Predestined to adoption (verse 5)
- Accepted and beloved (verse 6)
- Redemption through His blood (verse 7)
- Forgiveness of sins (verse 7)
- Riches of His grace abound to you (verses 7 and 8)
- Made known to you the mystery of His will (verse 9)
- Obtained an eternal inheritance (verse 11)
- Heard the Word of truth (verse 13)
- Sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise (verse 13)
Even before moving on, just take these in a second time. Through Jesus Christ (the SON OF GOD, by the way – can you even believe the very Son of God would venture to notice you in your stresses? But He does – and He loves you and me so much!) we are blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavens. Every spiritual blessing. That’s right: Too blessed to be stressed.
For He chose us in Him, before the foundation of the world, to be holy and blameless in His sight.
Too blessed to be stressed because we have been chosen before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight.
So what are we stressing about? We have been chosen by God before the foundation of the World – before you or I, before even your parent or their parents (or their parents) were even considered by their parents – you were chosen to be holy and blameless in the sight of God. And so you are! You are holy in God’s sight – you are blameless in God’s sight. So don’t stress about what you look like to yourself or to others (I’m preaching to myself here . . . ). You are holy and blameless to the Almighty Creating God – that’s all that you need!
In love He predestined us to be adopted through Jesus Christ for Himself, according to His favor and will, to the praise of His glorious grace that He favored us with in the Beloved.
Too blessed to be stressed because you were predestined to be adopted through Jesus Christ for Himself.
This verse turns me so much to my dear friend, Lizzy’s testimony and her beautiful baby girl who was destined for adoption by the most wonderful family. God knew each of us before the foundations of the world (Jeremiah 1:5, Romans 8:29), and we were knit together by Him in our mother’s wombs. Even at that time He knew that we would be adopted through Jesus into His kingdom! So why are we stressing? Not only are we adopted into God’s own family, but He knew that we would be before the foundations of the world. If we can trust our present with God, we can certainly trust our future!
We have redemption in Him through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace that He lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.
Too blessed to be stressed because we. are. redeemed.
After you accept the Jesus Christ is God’s Son, was sent to die for you, rose again, and gave the only acceptable sacrifice capable of redeeming you from your sins and the punishment you deserve (the punishment we all deserve!) – you are redeemed! The best part? Nothing can separate us from the love of God after we are part of the redeemed.
What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us?
He did not even spare His own Son but offered Him up for us all; how will He not also with Him grant us everything? Who can bring an accusation against God’s elect [God’s redeemed]? God is the One who justifies. Who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is the One who died, but even more, has been raised; He also is at the right hand of God and intercedes for us. Who can separate us from the love of Christ? Can affliction or anguish or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: Because of You we are being put to death all day long; we are counted as sheep to be slaughtered.
No, in all these things we are more than victorious through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that not even death or life, angels or rulers, things present or things to come, hostile powers, height or depth, or any other created thing will have the power to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord!
We are Loved – We are Redeemed – We are Safe
He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure that He planned in Him for the administration of the days of fulfillment—to bring everything together in the Messiah, both things in heaven and things on earth in Him.
Too blessed to be stressed because God is the planner: He makes known to us the mystery of His will, and His is bringing us together with Christ.
It is so easy, as a planner and a control freak, to be so inclined as to wonder at the timing of God and to get frustrated when I don’t have complete control over that timing. But here Paul writes to the Ephesians, and to us, that it was God’s good pleasure to plan for us and everything in heaven and on earth to be brought together in Christ. Whatever small slightness of joy I get from crossing things off my endless list of pointless to-dos surely pales in comparison to the good pleasure of God Himself that He enjoyed by planning for each of us to come into the Kingdom, and to come back to Himself. In the same way, we can take heart that every day of ours is written in God’s book. We can take heart that Christ is returning to the earth, very soon, to take us back to Him to the place He is preparing for the Church, His bride. We can take heart that in the midst of all of our planning, God Himself, the author of all things, the ultimate planner, has the pen. God is in control! So why are we stressing?
We have also received an inheritance in Him, predestined according to the purpose of the One who works out everything in agreement with the decision of His will, so that we who had already put our hope in the Messiah might bring praise to His glory.
Too Blessed to be Stressed because we have a holy inheritance in Jesus Christ.
This verse is wonderful to remember when things get stressful. I liken it to someone I know at work who is the heir to a very large and wealth company. Comments are often made that this person doesn’t need to work, so of course they aren’t stressed about anything. The point is not that they do or do not need to work. The point is that they don’t need to stress because they are heirs to a great inheritance. But aren’t we also? Aren’t we truly heirs to the greatest inheritance? And so surely we shouldn’t be the ones stressing and worrying, just as this person I work with.
God “works out everything in agreement with the decision of His will”: God is in control.
The purpose? “so that we . . . might bring praise to His glory.” It’s all about God in the end. It’s all about His glory and bringing Him honor and praise. Our lives are not about us, but about loving God and knowing God and accepting the beautiful gift of knowing and loving Him. So when we stress about these worldly things, we aren’t claiming our purpose here. It is a lie from Hell that we should be worrying about the things about this world. We don’t belong here. We need to fully trust God and put our hope in the Messiah so we might bring praise to His glory! Amen!
When you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and when you believed in Him, you were also sealed with the promised Holy Spirit. He is the down payment of our inheritance, for the redemption of the possession, to the praise of His glory.
Ephesians 1:3-14 (HCSB)
Too Blessed to be Stressed because we are sealed with the promised Holy Spirit.
And nothing – NOTHING can take that away.