Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Ephesians 1:15-23

What is “the hope to which God has called us”? What are the “riches of His glorious inheritance”? These days so many of us have seen today’s economy absolutely devastate the personal financial situation of so many in our society and maybe even ours – we’ve all lost something recently. Retirement accounts are worth significantly less, other investments are non-existent and even worse, whole companies have gone out of business and so many have lost their jobs. When we think about hope and riches – what most of us think of first is how much we don’t have.

It’s easy to get wrapped up in the losses. Some have – they’ve been so devastated they don’t know where to turn. Two billionaires who lost so much they couldn’t deal with it and decided they were worth more dead than alive and they committed suicide. Hopefully none of us are anywhere close to that and we realize that our very lives are so much more valuable than any stock we hold or any job we have.

So, in these times, where do we find hope? Our hope is always first and foremost founded on Christ. Let us remember, when Jesus came into the world the world was expecting a Messiah – but a very different one. They were expecting someone to rescue them from the Roman oppression. Jesus came. He was the Messiah. Roman occupation did not end. What Jesus gave was hope in spite of the occupation. The riches he gave were found in the gifts of the Holy Spirit, the peace of knowing the God loves them and is with them - in good times and in bad times. Reliance on the goodness of God is what gets us through times like this. God’s riches are also the inspiration for us to focus on what true riches are – riches of our families and friends, riches of having a personal relationship with God. If we focus on developing those relationships and not developing our portfolio, we won’t be so stressed about what is going on in the world. Maybe we could even save more worldly riches by not spending on things that are unnecessary and living our lives more simply. Now is a good time to reprioritize – to focus on the hope that is in Christ and the riches He has given us and not on the things of this world.

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