Send Tampa Mission Trip – Ephesians 2:1-10 – The Wonder of the Gospel

Just before I graduated from college, two of my best friends and I decided on whim to take a trip to Yellowstone National Park. One morning we decided to spend the day on a hike and see where the trail led. It was a long hike, and after a while we started joking that it really didn’t look much different from the woods of East Texas where we’d all grown up. But then, all of a sudden, before any of us really had time to notice anything was changing, the forest cleared and we found ourselves standing at the edge of the Grand Canyon. What an incredible sense of smallness I had at that moment, staring into a dizzying expanse below me.

You know, I think the gospel would have that same overwhelming effect on us if we took the time to stop and really think about it. How long has it been since you looked up from the earthly details of life and came face to face with the Grand Canyon of what God has done for us in the gospel – his unfathomable grace in forgiving people who have rebelled against him, his breathtaking plan to send his Son to suffer and die in their place, to establish the throne of the resurrected Jesus over a kingdom of perfect righteousness, and to bring those who are saved and redeemed by his blood into a new heavens and new earth where sin and evil will be forever conquered!

How is it that I let the beauty and power and vastness of that gospel be crowded out of my mind so often and for so long? Why is it that my thoughts and emotions are often dominated by silly things like whether my car is clean, or what’s happening on CNN right now, or whether I was happy with my lunch today, rather than by these glorious truths? Why do I so often organize and think about my life as if I were wearing blinders, rather than in the light of eternity? Why does this gospel not permeate, all the time and all the way to the bottom, my relationships with my wife and children, my coworkers and friends and fellow church members?

I know exactly why. It’s because I’m a sinner, and worldliness will continue to linger in my heart and war against me until that day Jesus comes back. But until then, I want to fight against that. I want to fight against spiritual laziness – against the drugged stupor this world constantly threatens to put me in – and I want to embrace this gospel hard and let if affect everything – my actions, affections, emotions, desires, thoughts, and will.

I hope you want that too. And I hope this has helped part the trees a little so you can see the grandeur of what God has done for you in Jesus. Not only that, but I wonder if God’s grace to you has caused you to love the world around you more, and to long to see people come to know and believe in Jesus Christ. If we truly understand the grace God has shown to us, our hearts will burn to see that same grace shown to others.

Greg Gilbert

Heart Preparation
Take some time to slowly read through Ephesians 2:1-10 and to meditate for a moment on each verse. Do you feel the wonder of these verses and of God’s great salvation for his people? How does this understanding fuel your own worship? And how does it fuel your desire for others to share in this great salvation?

Song for this Week
Saviour of the World by Ben Cantelon

Posted on: July 9, 2015 - 10:00PM

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