Identity: Covered By Grace

Covered by GraceTonight was the first of our new fortnightly meetings and we spent some time digging into Scripture together. Still following the theme of Identity, but this week looking at a passage from the New Testament and trying to see what it reveals about who we are & how God feels about us.

We started by drawing a portrait of someone in the room in just 2 minutes. Our combined lack of artistic ability made for plenty of giggles. Then we drew a self-portrait with one or two features exaggerated, before reflecting on what our self-portrait reveals about how we see ourselves.

Ricky SketchMolly Sketch

Everyone was a given a pen & the text of Ephesians 1:3-14 and encouraged to scribble, underline & mark it however they wanted as I read through it. They were also given a sheet with three symbols on it as an aid to studying the Bible passage:

  •  Lightbulb: write down what shines out from the passage, the obvious messages, or whatever strikes you for the first time
  • Question mark: write down anything you don’t understand (words, phrases, concepts), or any questions which come up for you as you read it
  • Arrow: personal application, how should this change your attitude/behaviour/attitude?

Bible Study SymbolsWe then spent about 10 minutes exploring the passage individually, scribbling notes, etc. before coming together and sharing our lightbulbs, questions & thoughts about application. It was a really helpful exercise. Here are a selection of our thoughts/discussions:

  • Lightbulb:
    • It is clear that we are dearly loved by God & so special/precious to Him
    • We’ve been adopted into His family; fully accepted, an heir of His Kingdom
    • God has not only showered us with kindness, but also wisdom & understanding
    • We were loved & chosen before the world was created
      • we are looked at us faultless – because ‘God has made a covering for us
      • perhaps ‘covered by grace’ is a more helpful phrase than ‘covered by the blood of the lamb’
  • Question mark:
    • we are heirs of His Kingdom & promised an inheritance, but an inheritance usually comes through the death of a parent; how does that work now that Jesus has died & been raised to eternal life?
      • does it come upon our death, is it available when Christ comes again, or is it available now?
      • perhaps it’s like the prodigal son, that we can ask for our inheritance now?
        • [‘ask anything in my name and it will be granted’ Jesus]
      • Christ’s death has secured the inheritance, and it’s assured by the Holy Spirit – not sure when we receive it
  • Application:
    • We need to live as though we are loved (because we are!) & remember how special/precious we are to God
    • We need to praise & glorify Him for all he’s done
    • It’s important to remember that being saved requires us to take action/make a choice/decision (v13)
    • Must remember that God has a plan & He’s working it out – we need to trust in His promises
      • especially when life is tough – no matter what we’re facing
      • He is a good God who loves us…

To close we listened to Ephesians 2:1-10, then listened to the following song whilst reflecting on what God had revealed to us:

[Spotify link just for Thomas as he’s given up YouTube for Lent]

 

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