Ephesians 3:17-21 says, ‘I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.’
Every year, my home church runs a camp for young people to come and discover the unbounded, devoted love of Jesus Christ. We do life together for a few days; praying, worshipping and spending time in God’s word. The Spirit moved so incredibly – gently and ferociously – stitching together broken lives, inspiring creative minds and teaching us all what love really is. This year, we were looking at these few verses from Ephesians 3 and I’ve decided to take the liberty of pinching the title, ‘Immeasurably More’, for this blogpost because there is some seriously fab stuff within these verses that my fingers were itching to write about.
There has been many a time in my life where I have felt like God is many moons away. I’ve had moments where I feel like my prayers are hitting the ceiling, like i’m trying to connect to a distant relative on FaceTime on a broken phone with really dodgy internet. And yet I am told that God is closer than my breath, that He knows me better than I know myself. So why does my relationship with Him sometimes seem so fuzzy, so unclear?
As a person, I like control. In the past, letting things go beyond my own organisation and planning would often throw me off course and cause me to freak. Spontaneity? It’s a no from me. But it’s something i’m working on, and university has been great for forcing me to put the script down and just start improvising. In the past however, being vulnerable before God and allowing Him to move in my life scared me no end because I knew I would have to let my guard down.
I was calling out to God to draw close to me, not wanting to admit to the fact that He already had, just as He always has done, and that it was me who was holding Him at arms length. God is not intrusive, He wasn’t going to force himself on me when I didn’t truly want Him to. But that doesn’t mean that He didn’t care about me – He has too much grace just to let me fall by the wayside! He has so wonderfully moulded my trust in Him this past year, being strengthened through his Spirit (like Ephesians 3:15 explains) to allow myself to draw close to Him without insecurity. Through faith and the power of God, Christ dwells in my heart and intimately ministers to me in every detail of my life.
What I find amazing about this passage is that it talks about needing power even just to glimpse how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ. God’s love is overwhelming, it’s reckless and mighty. We need to be made strong to be able to fathom it. I love it! When we think we’ve finally grasped what it means to be loved by Jesus, He goes and reveals His beauty, His grace and His mercy in a whole new way. Blowing off the cobwebs of our understanding of Him, causing us to fall in love with Him again and again.
And when we are rooted and established in love (Ephesians 3:17), what else can grow but goodness and fruitful seed? I’ve come to learn first hand that God can use us in immeasurably more ways that we can imagine when we let Him move. God is so much more than our inability and weakness. He is able. I don’t know about you but this is so reassuring. It’s this truth that persuaded me to let my guard down and begin to love the spontaneity of the Spirit, to feel excited about the unknown and to want God to use me for His good.
Can I encourage you to let go and let God? Let Him strengthen you so that you are able to receive Him in his fulness. Let Him give you the power to grasp His incomprehensible love. All to ultimately bring Him the glory that He deserves.
The words of this passage are simple and yet incredibly powerful. God reveals so much of himself to us when we take the time to delve deep into what He’s saying. I got a whole lot out of this part of scripture, as I know many others at camp did. It was so encouraging to see young faces light up at the mention of Jesus, at the realisation of His love. In a food fuelled stupor and slightly sleep deprived, we united as an army – praying with passion and worshipping like our lives depended on it! And my prayer is that it doesn’t just stop there. I pray that we will continue to draw close to Jesus on a daily basis, asking Him to move in our lives and allowing Him to do immeasurably more.