ADORATION – Reflect on God’s Greatness
God is Glorious Scripture presents God’s glory in two major ways. In one sense, God’s glory isn’t an attribute, but the superlative honor that everything in the universe should give to God (Isaiah 43:7, Romans 3:23, John 17:5).
But God’s “glory” also describes the bright light that surrounds his presence. It belongs to him alone and it’s the outward expression of his excellence. We see this glory in several places in Scripture. For example:
- When the angel of the Lord appears to the shepherds (Luke 2:9)
- The transfiguration (Matthew 17:2)
- The heavenly city in Revelation (Revelation 21:23)
Praise God because He is Glorious
Praise be to his glorious name forever; may the whole earth be filled with his glory. Amen and Amen. Psalm 72:19
CONFESSION: Confess your sins to God and receive his continued mercy.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9
THANKSGIVING: Giving thanks to God for his specific blessings in our lives.
“Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.” Psalm 100
SUPPLICATION: Bringing our requests to God.
- Bring your personal prayer requests to God.
- Pray for Christian Challenge as they meet at the church tonight.
- Ask God to speak as you read and meditate.
Ephesians 4:1-16 The Message
To Be Mature
1-3 In light of all this, here’s what I want you to do. While I’m locked up here, a prisoner for the Master, I want you to get out there and walk—better yet, run!—on the road God called you to travel. I don’t want any of you sitting around on your hands. I don’t want anyone strolling off, down some path that goes nowhere. And mark that you do this with humility and discipline—not in fits and starts, but steadily, pouring yourselves out for each other in acts of love, alert at noticing differences and quick at mending fences.
4-6 You were all called to travel on the same road and in the same direction, so stay together, both outwardly and inwardly. You have one Master, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who rules over all, works through all, and is present in all. Everything you are and think and do is permeated with Oneness.
7-13 But that doesn’t mean you should all look and speak and act the same. Out of the generosity of Christ, each of us is given his own gift. The text for this is,
He climbed the high mountain,
He captured the enemy and seized the plunder,
He handed it all out in gifts to the people.
Is it not true that the One who climbed up also climbed down, down to the valley of earth? And the One who climbed down is the One who climbed back up, up to highest heaven. He handed out gifts above and below, filled heaven with his gifts, filled earth with his gifts. He handed out gifts of apostle, prophet, evangelist, and pastor-teacher to train Christ’s followers in skilled servant work, working within Christ’s body, the church, until we’re all moving rhythmically and easily with each other, efficient and graceful in response to God’s Son, fully mature adults, fully developed within and without, fully alive like Christ.
14-16 No prolonged infancies among us, please. We’ll not tolerate babes in the woods, small children who are easy prey for predators. God wants us to grow up, to know the whole truth and tell it in love—like Christ in everything. We take our lead from Christ, who is the source of everything we do. He keeps us in step with each other. His very breath and blood flow through us, nourishing us so that we will grow up healthy in God, robust in love.
“To live a life worthy” is literally to “walk worthy.” “Walking” can be an idiom for living. We “walk through life”, we talk about our “walk with Christ”, a difficult period of life can be called “a long journey.” To walk worthy of our calling means that we live out, in every aspect of our lives, the reality of what Christ has done for us. There is no separation of our lives into component parts. To switch illustrations from walking to “dinner”…we are to be like stew with the meat, potatoes, vegetables all together in one pot, not separated on our plates. Christ is in all of who we are and in all of what we do. It can be difficult to discern how to walk worthy of Christ in certain arenas of our lives but it is not impossible. If walking was easy Paul would not feel compelled to “urge” us to live this life. The word he uses is very strong. It is not a gentle reminder or a word of encouragement, it is a forceful word. He feels the need to compel us in this direction precisely because it is as difficult as it is important. Give this your full attention and full effort. Don’t worry about it though. Worry is “sideways energy.” Worry is not walking; it is spinning in circles. “Walk worthy of your calling.”