“That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:7).

God has shown his loving, warmhearted kindness to us. Therefore, we can wake up shouting, “Hallelujah! God, Christ, and the Holy Spirit want to be near me.”

Every Christian will face temptations and hardships, but in the midst of our trials, we are able to abound with thanksgiving because of his everlasting kindness toward us. Paul tells us this is exactly why God has made us to sit together with Christ.

One of the great blessings that becomes ours when we are made to sit in heavenly places is that we enjoy the privilege of acceptance. “He made us accepted in [Christ]” (Ephesians 1:6). The Greek word for “accepted” here means highly favored. That is different from the English usage, which can be interpreted to mean “received as adequate.” This signifies something that can be endured, suggesting an attitude of, “I can live with it.” That’s not the case with Paul’s usage. His use of “accepted” translates as, “God has highly favored us.” We are very special to him because we are in our place in Christ.

You see, because God accepted Christ’s sacrifice, he now sees only one, corporate man: Christ, and those who are bound to him by faith. In short, our flesh has died in God’s eyes. How? Jesus did away with our old nature at the cross. So now, when God looks at us, he sees only Christ. In turn, we need to learn to see ourselves as God does. That means not focusing solely on our sins and weaknesses, but on the victory that Christ won for us at the cross.

The parable of the prodigal son provides a powerful illustration of the acceptance that comes when we’re given a heavenly position in Christ. You know the story: a young man took his inheritance from his father and squandered it on a sinful life. Then, once the son became completely bankrupt — morally, emotionally, and spiritually — he thought of his father and was convinced he had lost all favor with him.

The son returned to his father, repentant and broken, expecting to be rejected but his father welcomed him with open arms of forgiveness and acceptance. “His father saw him and had compassion and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him” (Luke 15:20).

Experience the full blessings of your acceptance today!