He made us accepted in the Beloved.
— Ephesians 1:6
All that God has done has been because of His grace, which means "unmerited favor." You aren't merely forgiven, justified, and cleansed of your sins; you have been received in love by God Himself. This is because of His deep love for His own Son, Jesus. Because His Son lives in you, you have found His favor. You have the approval of God because of what Jesus has done.
Some people have been raised in homes in which their father may have never demonstrated any kind of love toward them. Maybe he was cold and distant. Or maybe they, like me, were raised in a home where there wasn't a father at all. We can transfer those emotions to God the Father. We can walk around in life feeling as though we don't have the approval of God: If I just did this, God would notice. If worked a little harder, then God would love me.
God approves of you. You are "accepted in the Beloved" — not because you read your Bible a little bit longer, share Christ with more people, or give a little more in the offering. You are still accepted even when you don't do all of that. You are accepted in the Beloved when you fail, when you trip up. You are accepted in the Beloved not because of what you have done, but because of what He has done.
In understanding this great truth, however, you should want to do everything for His glory—not to earn His approval, but because you already have it.
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