March 1, 2021 — Spots and Wrinkles

“That’s a nice looking shirt you have on,” I said to Stan one morning.  “Very stylish.”

“Thanks,” he replied.  “You can thank my wife.”

“Oh, did she buy it for you?”

“No,” Stan said, “but she encouraged me to wear it rather than the one I had on when I was ready to leave the house.”

“So you changed,” I replied.  “I feel honored.”

“As I was ready to leave, my wife looked at me and told me the shirt I had on was all wrinkled and had spots on it.  Being who and what I tend to be, I hadn’t even noticed.”

“Well, in any event,” I said, “that’s a fine looking shirt.”

“Thanks, again,” Stan replied.  “This conversation reminds me of something the apostle Paul wrote to the church in Ephesus.”

“Don’t tell me he wrote about shirts,” I said with a smile.

“He didn’t, but he sure did write about spots and wrinkles.”

“In what way?” I asked.

“Paul wrote about how Jesus views the church and how Jesus wants the church to be presented to Himself as cleansed without a spot or wrinkle, as holy and blameless.”

“And,” he continued, “it’s vitally important for me and my faith walk that I remember that ‘the church’ is not some organization, but is the body of believers of which I’m a part.  So, when Paul was writing to ‘the church,’ he was writing to and about me as well.  No spots and no wrinkles!”

____________________________________

Bible verses to consider:

. . . that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she should be holy and blameless.  Ephesians 5:27.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him.  Ephesians 1:3-4.

Prayer:  Thank you, Father, that you so loved the world that you gave Jesus so that all who believe can have the assurance of life eternally with you when it’s time.  Thank you for those who brought me to that truth so I can be a part of your church. Thank you for washing me clean by the blood of the Lamb so that I can appear before you without spots and wrinkles. As you know, too often I do not present myself as you intend while you keep me in this life, but I go around with spots and wrinkles that get in the way of manifesting who I am in and through Christ.  Please help me in wanting always to be exactly as you intend, not spotted, wrinkled, or defiled in any other way, but only holy and blameless in your eyes.  Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus.  Amen.

Think on this:  Have you accepted God’s free and gracious gift of salvation and redemption so you will appear before Him in eternity without spots or wrinkles?  If no, why?  If you have the assurance of salvation, how are you doing with the spots and wrinkles on this side of eternity while you wait for the train?  If not as well as you would like, do you think there’s a remedy for that?  If so, what is it?  Can you do it on your own?

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