As I read Ephesians recently, the word "So" just kept jumping off the pages at me. So. The kind of "So" that answers the question "Why?". Here's what God's word says in Ephesians:
"God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. SO we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son.... The Spirit is God's guarantee that he will give us the inheritance he promised and that he has purchased us to be his own people. He did this SO we would praise and glorify him.... For He raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus. SO God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of all his grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us who are united with Christ Jesus.... For we are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, SO we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
We love thinking and talking about the truth that God has adopted us, promised us an inheritance, purchased us, raised us from the dead, seated us with him, united us with Christ, created us anew and made us into his masterpieces. I mean, really? He did ALL of that for ME? It's so amazing and so humbling and even sometimes so confusing that I think sometimes we get so wrapped up in all he has done for us, we forget to ask the question, "Why?". Why has he done this for us? Why would he do this for ME? And a true and often arrived at answer would be, "Because he loves us." Yes, he loves us! Ephesians says that when he adopted us it was what he wanted to do and it gave him great pleasure! But these verses are evidence that his purposes are even greater than his desire to show us his love. Ephesians says that he has shown us this great love SO that we will praise him, glorify him, be his examples, and do the good things he planned for us long ago. Praise him. Glorify him. Be his examples. DO the good things he planned for us.
So.... it just has me thinking about how our response to his unfathomable gift of grace and love is to be so much more than gratitude. So much more than acknowledgement. So much more than awe. Our response involves praising. Our response involves glorifying. And even more overlooked than praising and glorifying, our response involves being and doing. Being and doing for the sake of earning? No, of course not. Just being and doing because He said SO....