By Scott Brown
Pastor, First Baptist Church, Waverly
Focal Passage: Ephesians 3:14-21
Paul’s letter to the Ephesians is constantly weaving together teachings to them and prayers for them. This incredible prayer is a beautiful picture of Paul’s heart for the faith family in Ephesus and a worshipful description of the infinite wonder of the majesty of God.
He prays that they might comprehend the length, width, breadth and depth of the love of Christ. This is not a prayer for them to have a better academic understanding of God’s love but a better experiential understanding of God’s love. He wants them to have a deep, spiritual knowledge together of the surpassing love of God.
God’s love is limitless and all surpassing; their knowledge of Him is meant to be always growing and ever increasing as they will never find the limits of the wonderful love of God. God’s love surpasses understanding. Rather than us ever containing or grasping it, the love of God consumes us, grips us, fills and overflows us spilling out into this broken world.
Ephesians 3:20 is a blessed reminder that God is not limited. He is not scared I might ask or think something out of His grasp or grip. If anything, my prayers are too small.
He can do beyond anything I could ever imagine in my wildest dreams to ask of Him. It’s for this reason I know that when He doesn’t answer my prayers as I prayed them it’s because He’s answering them better.
God knows me better than me, loves me better than me, and wants for me better than me. He is not too small and my desires too big for Him to satisfy; my desires are far too small and I am far too easily satisfied.
C.S. Lewis put it like this, “It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”
This God who can do exceedingly abundantly above all we ask or think is the same God who indwells us by His Spirit. His power is more than enough to save, to sanctify, to seal and secure us in Him.
Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians, and for us, is to intimately know by experience the infinite love of God and to trust the all surpassing, never limited power of God to accomplish the good will of God.
To this God be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen. B&R — Brown is pastor of First Baptist Church, Waverly.