The arrival of Jesus on the scene, which was the fulfillment of this prophecy in Isaiah (Isaiah 61:1-3), means that we have access to every facet of salvation. What Jesus did on the cross for you is way bigger than forgiveness of sin and a forever home in Heaven.
Salvation, bought with the blood of Jesus is for your abundant life on earth too. Some of the things promised as a result of being a child of God:
-Good news for the poor: Hope, justice, provision, health, safety, opportunity, purpose.
-Healing of broken hearts and all of our diseases.
-Liberty to those held captive by anything: Addiction, abuse, intimidation/control/fear/anxiety, manipulation, debt, ignorance, lust, pride.
-Freedom from any kind of bondage: Spiritual, physical, emotional, or mental.
-Fullness of God’s plan for your life: Redemption, purpose, completion.
-Justice/vengeance for any wrong committed against you.
-Comfort for any loss.
-Beauty as a trade for ashes.
-Joy as a trade for mourning.
-Praise to combat depression.
All of these are yours. They are only part of your inheritance as a child of the living God. You can have any of these. Some of them will unfold over time, and some of them are instant. Some of these have to be walked out, by faith, in order to become a tangible reality, and some just happen without you lifting a finger. Even when working out your salvation, with action and obedience and knowledge and pursuit, He is still giving you the grace and energy and heart to do so. He pretty much does it all. We just follow His heart and timing and voice.
Which one of these pieces of the work of salvation do you need to grow in? A lot of people need help with joy, and fighting depression with praise, and having comfort for loss.
Many people believe that God does not care about comforting us when we are dismayed or have suffered tragedy or loss. This is not true. The apostle Paul called Him the “Father of mercies, and the God of ALL comfort, who comforts us in ALL our tribulation…” (2 Cor 1:3-5, caps mine). I believe God made it a point to show up as a Father in this verse, the Father of ALL mercies. When we have suffered loss or pain or injustice, that’s what we want: our Father to show up and make it right. He is a good Father. Do you need some comfort today? Do you need closure for some hard things that have happened, or a new perspective of old pain? Ask. Keep asking. And then start looking for it.
You are wholly loved, and Love wants you whole. This is why He gave you such a huge gift (of salvation) to explore. Don’t forfeit the wholeness available to you. You are meant to walk in deep friendship with God, free, confident, joyful and strong. So many people stop short of this, and turn their heart’s focus to things of this world: Money, entertainment, status, people, stuff, education, physical safety, social justice, etc.
You’ll never truly have peace by focusing on any of these. They will sap your energy, steal your joy, harden your heart, because none of them is equipped to quench your eternal thirst. None of them are wrong, but focusing on them is a trap that can be costly.
Only Jesus can bring satisfaction to your heart. Only He can quench your thirst. Only His way will keep you safe, and help you forgive, and lead you into more and more freedom and impact in the world around you. Only He has the words of life.
Let the good news of His salvation overhaul your life. Don’t stop short of Heaven on earth.