Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny
Even though we were dead in transgressions, made us alive together with Christ – by grace you are saved! – and he raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, to demonstrate in the coming ages the surpassing wealth of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. Ephesians 2.5-7
I remember one time when one of my children had just been disciplined for something they had done wrong. They did not think very highly of me at the time. I remember them telling me that they wished I were not their mother. Now, folks, that comment made out of anger still had the power to hurt this mother’s heart even though I knew that they did not really mean it. Once the anger on their part had cooled, everything was fine again. Imagine how God must feel when in our selfishness we prefer to die in our sins rather than live in communion with him. It is mind-blowing once we understand exactly what God’s grace did on our behalf. There had to be a sacrifice. Jesus became that sacrifice. His purpose was to come here, obey God, and die for me and for you. God makes me alive again because of that sacrifice when I obey him. I have a new home in the heavenly realm! That is cause for joy!