There’s a passage in Elizabeth Rudnick’s Christopher Robin: The Novelisation that tugs at my heartstrings.
The scene centres on a crestfallen Winnie the Pooh who had just learned that Christopher Robin had rushed back to London for a very important meeting. Letting out a big sigh, he told Piglet he wasn’t feeling “very much like Pooh today”. Gently, Piglet took Pooh’s paw and said comfortingly: “There, there. I’ll bring you tea and honey until you do.”
Don’t we all wish we have a loyal friend like Piglet to bring us tea and honey whenever we’re hit by the winds of disappointment?
The good news is, we have been given Someone better—Jesus. Not only does Jesus stick closer to us than a brother (Proverbs 18:24), He truly understands our hurts and weaknesses, having faced the same trials and temptations as we do (Hebrews 4:15).
More than that, when Jesus defeated death, He gave us the hope of redemption. In Ephesians 1:20-22, Paul tells us that when God raised Jesus from the dead, He “seated him at his right hand”, and exalted Him “far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name … in the present age but also in the one to come” (vv. 21-22).
Knowing that Jesus is placed “above all rule and authority, power and dominion” (v. 21) was a source of strength for me in 2020. It was a year of endless lockdowns in Australia, and of mixed emotions—as I nursed the stings of betrayal caused by a friend and disappointment in God for not answering a specific prayer.
During this time, I experienced what it meant to have a friend like Jesus. He sat with me in my tears, comforted me in my pain, and gave me the encouragement I needed to keep going. This gives me the confidence that God is able to redeem all my heartaches, if not in this lifetime, then in the next.
What’s even more wondrous for me is the thought that Jesus—the risen King who has been put in charge of the entire universe (population: 7 billion)—is now enthroned at God’s right hand (v. 20), interceding and advocating for us (Romans 8:34 and 1 John 2:1). Adam Clarke noted in his commentary that the “right hand is a place of friendship, honour, confidence and authority.” It’s like having a really influential friend who can go to the Higher Ups when things turn pear-shaped on our end.
I thought of Jesus at God’s right hand, splendid and majestic, yet tender and compassionate, interceding for me. It made me feel so loved and heard.
I believe this is why Paul prayed for the Ephesians to have the eyes of their hearts opened, so they can see the hope that God has called them into, and their glorious inheritance in Christ (Ephesians 1:18). Paul was in effect saying, “There’s so much more waiting for us when we reach heaven! You can’t see it now, but it’s there!” On those days where just getting through life seems like a mammoth effort, we need to remind ourselves that everything on earth is temporary (2 Corinthians 4:18), and at the other end is a place of abundant hope and riches, where Jesus awaits.
This isn’t about pooh-poohing our dreams or belittling our present worries. It’s about acknowledging we have Someone who cares and loves us, to the point of death. He now sits in the heavenly realms, at God’s right hand and above everything on earth, fully in control. And He wants us to entrust every part of our lives to Him. ”
—Michele Ong, New Zealand
Questions for reflection
Father, I praise You for Your great power, which brought Jesus from death to life and set Him above all things. When I lose my way, help me remember that I have a Great High Priest and ultimate Friend who constantly watches over me, and who is in control over all things.
Return to YMI Reading Ephesians Homepage