One of the passages in the Bible that I turn to most when I need some encouragement is in Romans Chapter 5. Here, the apostle Paul talks about how Christ's work on the cross has saved us, justified us, and reconciled us to God. He writes, "And since by His blood He did all this for us as sinners, how much MORE will He do for us now that He has declared us not guilty? Now He will save us from all of God's wrath to come." (v. 9) I'm so grateful that I will be saved from God's future wrath, but sometimes I need to dwell on what He is going to do for me in THIS life.
Paul goes on to say, "And since, when we were His enemies, we were brought back to God by the death of His Son, what BLESSINGS He must have for us NOW that we are His friends and He is living within us!" (v. 10) God is not content with giving us eternal life for the future. He wants us to live an abundant life right here, right now - through His Spirit who "is living within us!" - and this is one of the many reasons why He sacrificed His Son. (John 10:10) The Lord showed me years ago that He doesn't limit His blessings to spiritual blessings. He has earthly blessings for us, too, when we continually seek Him, and give Him first place in our lives. (Matthew 6:33)
Next, Paul says, "Now we rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God - all because of what our Lord Jesus Christ has done in dying for our sins - making us friends of God." (Romans 5:11 TLB) When you and I received Christ as our Lord and Savior, we entered into a "new relationship with God," which gives us access to His divine wisdom, power, and favor - and to an unlimited source of blessings. Jesus now calls us His "friends" (John 15:15), and He tells us, "The Father Himself loves you dearly because you love Me and believe that I came from God." (John 16:27 NLT) If God extended the blessing of eternal life to us when we were His "enemies" (v. 10), how many more blessings will He extend to us when we are living our lives for Him?
Today, rejoice that your blessings from the Lord are for HERE, as well as the hereafter, and begin to make the most of your inheritance in Christ!
Prayer: Lord, I thank You that You showed Your "great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners." (Romans 5:8 NLT) I praise You for Your precious gifts of salvation and eternal life. I am so grateful that You call me Your friend, and that You love me dearly. Please give me insight and understanding into how You desire to bless me with earthly blessings, as well as spiritual ones. Teach me how to seek first Your Kingdom and righteousness, and to always give You first place in my life. Thank You for every blessing, reward, and opportunity that You have for me now that I am Your friend and You are living in me!
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