Remember God's Blessings
"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ." Ephesians 1:3
A blessing is a privilege or favor that is granted to us because we are connected to someone or something that is advantageous or good; a gift; an act of kindness. There are many blessings each of us have at the present or have experienced in the past; it is good to not forget them or take them for granted. Through the acceptance of Christ as our Savior, we are connected to the blessings provided in the New Testament. To realize the blessings, it is important to see and accept ourselves as Jesus does (whole, complete, nothing missing, favored, delightful) and not by how we feel about ourselves. It is easy to hinder the Holy Spirit by how we feel instead of living by what God says.
The Bible outlines an abundance of blessings available to us as believers. When we spend time in God's Word and find out the blessings we have, righteousness becomes an active, powerful force in our life. When we acknowledge we are in Christ Jesus, we have received an inheritance and we have the right to walk in all the blessings and promises of God's Word.
Christianity is not a formula to receive blessings; it is an active relationship with the living God who desires to bless us. The fullness of the blessing of God has come to us through Christ and the Gospel (Romans 15:29). Through Christ, we are blessed with revelation knowledge, understanding, clarity and wisdom to help us understand the hope to which He has called us so we will know the riches and glorious blessings that God has promised us. We are blessed with the power of God to help us in our personal lives to be effective witnesses for Jesus on the earth (Ephesians 1:19-20, Acts 1:8).
Some people measure their blessedness according to material possessions. Although there is nothing wrong with being blessed with material possessions, it can cause people to place their trust in 'things' rather than God. God has made known to us through His Word that He wants us to trust Him as the source of our blessings rather than in the resources themselves. When we place our trust in God, we will never be disappointed. Spiritual blessings that we have received through Christ outweigh any material blessing.
The people in the Old Testament had what they called memory stones; they served the purpose of recalling all the blessings God did in their lives. It is important to remind ourselves to focus on our blessings. We all have had setbacks, and if we meditate on them, it drains us of valuable energy; it steals our confidence and joy. But, when we focus on our blessings, it builds our strength and confidence; it feeds our faith; it causes the energy of God to live and multiply; it gives us a reason to praise God.
God's blessings are put in a heavenly account in our name (Ephesians 1:3, I Peter 1:4). These blessings are progressively dispersed to us in increased form according to how we believe. Whatever we measure out to others is measured back to us (Luke 6:38). God's way of life is full of blessings and of peace that passes all understanding (Philippians 4:7). God's way of life is not a life of strain and struggle or a certain set of religious rules to obey. We are not blessed by God because we are good, but because He is good.
We need to take special care to remember that daily God is loading us with blessings (Psalm 68:19). These blessings were given to us through Christ and they truly are the potential for life, health and peace. Stop for a moment and think about the many benefits that God has bestowed upon you. You may be surprised just how many blessings you have already received and enjoyed!
God Given Blessings
1. We are chosen by God (Ephesians 1:4). We have been chosen and blessed prior to the creation of the world. The Lord tells us that we are His; we are loved, special and valuable. Behind the scenes of life is God at work. Freedom comes when we realize that we are dependent upon Him.
2. God has adopted us (vs 5). It is the pleasure of God to call us into His family. The word 'predestined' means 'it was meant to be'.
3. God gave us His Grace (vs 6). Grace is God's unconditional love, favor, mercy, kindness and forgiveness toward us through Jesus Christ. It can never be earned nor is it deserved, but it is God's gift activated by us. In His Grace, He has made us accepted. What Jesus Christ has accepted we dare not reject. Knowing we are accepted gives us the freedom to express who God intended us to be and do what God intended us to do.
4. God gave us redemption (vs 7). By applying Jesus Christ's blood to our life, we discover we are completely forgiven and our past is disempowered (Acts 3:19). Redemption is our gifted potential to walk and live by the power of the Holy Spirit. In redemption, we have the ability to respond to life situations in a new and different way and we are empowered to live by His Word.
5. God abounds toward us in all wisdom and understanding (vs 8). God's treasures of wisdom, knowledge and spiritual understanding are made known through the revelation of Jesus Christ (Colossians 2:3). Wisdom in the Spirit is a channel from God to us and then from us to others. Abound means to overflow, more than enough, exceedingly in measure and above the ordinary. It is our heritage to abound in all things and to enjoy a life of abundance (John 10:10).