Therefore, I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all. Ephesians 4:1-6
Today's thoughts from today's verses:
The Lord’s prayer begins with these words: “Our Father, who is in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. God’s is on a mission to reclaim the world for himself through the ongoing process of spreading his kingdom and will throughout the earth. God accomplishes his mission by reclaiming for himself, one person at a time. Those who have been reclaimed are those who can truly call him Father and truly worship his name. These are the ones who pray for his kingdom to come and his will to be done on earth. God’s strategy for advancing the kingdom involves having those who pray in this way become a part of the answer to the very prayer they pray.
These understandings from the Lord’s prayer help us understand the word “calling” in today’s Scripture. It is by means of the redemptive provision of God through his Son, Jesus Christ, that he reclaims people for himself. People who are reclaimed by God through redemption in Christ are called disciples and their primary calling in life is participating in the spread of his kingdom and will here on earth. The Apostle Paul says, “I …. implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called.”
The fact that the Apostle Paul speaks of disciples walking in a worthy manner suggests that it is possible for disciples not to walk in a worthy manner. The fact that he “implores” us to walk worthy suggests that disciples not walking worthy happens far too often. “Walking” is an image for the living of life. When the living of life is more about the things of earth than it is the things of God, his kingdom, and will, then one in not “walking” in a manner worthy of one’s “calling.” Walking worthy of our “calling” is all about right relationships with God, the world, and fellow disciples (the church).
One might think that what comes next in today’s passage after the Apostle’s Paul’s challenging admonition, would be a full explanation of what walking worthy of our calling is and is not in regard to relationships with God, the world, and fellow disciples (the church). But the Apostle Paul chooses to focus on our relationships with fellow disciples. The Apostle Paul recognizes that it is right relationships with our fellow disciples that is the key both for helping us maintain a close relationship with God and for helping us have a relationship with the world where we fully participate in the spread of God’s kingdom and will here on earth.
Read today’s Scripture again keeping in mind that when relationships with fellow disciples (church and small groups) are permeated with all that the Apostle Paul mentions, healthy systems of support will be available for all so that everyone walks worthy of their calling in regard to right relationships with God, the world, and fellow disciples (the church).
Today's prayer response from today's thoughts:
We have concluded another week and this would be a fitting day to put together your own prayer response. God Bless! Ken Hart
Posted on Sat, April 30, 2016
by Alan Porter