Striking it rich
December 9, 2021, 11:23 AM

I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints. Ephesians 1:18

When it comes to the world of wills and trust funds, bizarre stories of big money take center stage. There's the story of two homeless brothers living in a cave outside Budapest. Estranged from family, they had nothing one day then became billionaires the next. A grandmother living in Germany had passed away. On a technicality of law, the brothers being part of her few direct descendants, received her estate valued at about $5.5 billion. How about the waitress whose customer left the tip of a lifetime? A widower who had frequented her restaurant just to have someone to talk with befriended the young server. When he died, she was shocked to learn through a letter mailed to her home that the man had left her his entire estate that summed half a million dollars.  

Browse away, and the internet, of course, will boast droves of these "hitting-it-big" sort of tales. Each having its own dollar value and its own brand of weirdness, they all share the common ground of individuals impacted by unexpected riches. Our scripture reference from Ephesians offers a flash of insight into the wonder of an inheritance willed by God. With deep sincerity, the Apostle Paul is communicating to the Ephesians there is a way in which God, through the incredible power in Jesus Christ, will impact them with an inheritance like nothing else. 

Lots of times in life, people are okay with counting blessings as opposed to piling woes. This, however, just as often comes at the condition of knowing the tangible value of said blessings. So as Paul encourages prayer and thanksgiving to people in Ephesus, he wants to make known to his friends that there is a greater, sure-enough blessing from the estate of God. It is not something that fits into someone's listing of praises, but something uniquely and incomparably great.

Let's be real. Because of the roughness of life, we make this documenting of blessings and the ensuing giving of thanks a comeback strategy for walking with God. Maybe it is in the form of a promotion at work or perhaps a good grade at school; a windfall here, a relief there. Very well then. Let's give thanks. Whatever helps people get motivated to get right is good. However, God has a stronger, higher-yielding strategy for growth though. It can be discovered in His Word.   

Through Paul, there is an abundance of wisdom that God has packed into this little sampling in the letter to the Ephesians. First, he cites the "hope" of Jesus Christ. Such certainty flows through this word choice. There is an objective quality to it that offers assurance to God's people of the ultimate blessing. Next, the verse points to the "riches" of God's "glorious inheritance." Paul is reminding readers of this real, carefully designed will of God to come. In fact, it is for God's people, believers of all walks or, more specifically, the saints. Need collateral? Paul reminds us of the Holy Spirit throughout the letter. In the interim of living in this world, the Spirit is a steadfast support to keep driving at the ultimate blessing. 

Consider those crazy stories of inheriting wealth unexpectedly. So many of them include uncanny timing for people in serious need of lasting wealth. When we learn of someone in the world inheriting a fortune from another person, one might be inclined to say, "they really hit the jackpot." Rightly so. But how much more can the Creator of the universe and the Author of Salvation bless someone with His inheritance?

Multiple times the Word (even just in Ephesians) mentions "riches" and "inheritance." So often, in our prayers, we give thanks for the blessings we can see and compile. Yet, through the hope of Jesus Christ, God wants you to know He has something more. It may be that it is intangible, but it is not and never will be inaccessible. So it is time we reach out to the God of grace and peace, praise Him for what he gives, and ask Him to help keep our eyes open to an incomparable inheritance of riches.         

Prayer: Father God, You are inexplicably good. Great is all with which You will bless me from now until seeing Your glory, Lord. Open my mind's eye Lord, so I may gain assurance of Your mercies deep in my heart. Help me to grow closer to You and deeper in my understanding of Your ways. Thank you, Jesus, for the many blessings You have bestowed on me. Make me ever more grateful for the truth of Your blessings to come. Help me to remember the inheritance. Lord, I confess my flesh is weak, and I lose a focus on You. I pray that I receive Your good grace and share it generously with others. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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