1 Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. 2 And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. 3 But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints. 4 Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving. 5 For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not become partners with them; 8 for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), 10 and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. 11 Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret. 13 But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, 14 for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says, “Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.” (Ephesians 5:1-14; ESV)
Father it is our desire to live out your love in our lives. Because of your love, you Son gave himself for us, bearing all our sins on the cross. He is the sufficient offering and sacrifice that removes the penalty and stain of our sin so we can stand right before you. We hope in Christ, not our own works or religious effort, and we rest in his work. May self-giving and sacrificial love that glorifies you also be characteristic of our lives. May you enable us to love with a purity that exemplifies your coming Kingdom. Guard us from deceptive words and ideas in this age, which lead us into the darkness away from you. Give us the ability to discern how to please you with the way we live. Let the light of your grace, love, and holiness shine upon us, and may it be reflected out of our lives and not clouded or diminished by our conduct or lifestyles. You have made us alive in Christ, may we walk in his light and life. Amen.