September 30, 2016


Ephesians 2:14-22

In him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.

—  Ephesians 2:22

I have a wooden cross hanging on my office wall. As with anything our friend Andy made, it is simple—just two-by-fours into which he carved swirls with a chisel. On the day we moved away to work in another church, all the people from our little church signed their names on this cross. So there also, in black marker, is “Ron.”

I cannot help wondering if your name is on a cross somewhere. I mean, have you signed up? Have you applied your life to the eternal project of Christ? Scripture says that Christ died for you and gives his Spirit to you. Sanctification is Christ taking you in his hands and forming you, etching himself into you. There is no better way to live. God offers his heavenward power to you too.

You can sign up. All it takes is a prayer, accepting God’s gift of forgiveness and peace with simple, childlike trust and belief. Then—even if you’re scared or reluctant—find a trust­worthy church. Be baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Then rise up, in the love of God, and live. Do for other people what these members of our small church did for each other: what Ron did for Dwayne, or what Dick did for Andy. Or what that whole little church did for me.

My prayer is that you become a follower of Jesus Christ (if you are not one already), because this is the stuff of eternal life.

Father, I come to you in faith. Take me into the flow of eternal life, by your Spirit. Forgiveness, peace, purpose, and love—I am asking for it all. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

About the author — Keith Mannes

Keith Mannes serves as pastor at Highland Christian Reformed Church in McBain, Michigan. Keith and his wife, Alicia, recently celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary,
and they are thankful for their three children—Eben, Charis, and Breanna.

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