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Wisdom and Hope

Frontline Devotion for November 21, 2017 (Season of 'Time After Pentecost')

Ephesians 1:15-19

By: Anne B. Crawford

Author Photo

Ephesians 1:15-19

"I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe."

It is Thanksgiving week and in many venues people are asking and telling others what they are thankful for. I've just popped a bunch of handmade Thanksgiving cards in the mail to distant (geographically) family members to let them know I'm thankful they are a part of my life.

In these verses in Ephesians, Paul starts by giving thanks for the faith of the followers in Ephesus, as well as their love for others. But then he follows with these verses. Faithfulness and love for one another are important, but Paul wants more for his fellow believers. He wants them to be open to and receive God's wisdom and revelation to know Him better. God's wisdom is important because sooner or later, the temptation will come to depend on our own wisdom and resources. That's when faith can turn to rote behavior and love of others becomes a duty or chore, instead of a joy based on the hope we have in God's salvation.

In most instances, God's wisdom runs counter to what the world calls 'wisdom.' It is a wisdom that says sacrifice is the way to true hope and happiness. It is a wisdom that says God is number one, not me. It is a wisdom that seeks justice and healing, not vengeance and destructive self -promotion. God's wisdom and revelation are transformative and full of hope.

Be thankful this week (and all year long) and seek God's wisdom as you work to lead a life of hope that points others to God's grace.

Prayer: We give you thanks, O Lord, for the gift of faith, that allows us to claim Jesus' righteousness as our own. Give us wisdom to act on our faith in ways that honor you, serve others, and bring us true hope and peace. Amen.