For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Ephesians 3:14-19, ESV.
This last Sunday was wonderful. For the first time in months, we were able to gather together under one roof to worship. Brothers and sisters in Christ who had missed being together struggled with social distancing, but the joy of fellowship was palatable. Having prayed for one another during a period of absence, it was good to gather together once more.
Today’s passage reminds us that our regathering is no cause to cease praying. Here we read of Paul’s humble prayer for the church. God brought the church together as a family in the first place. Paul now asks that God now make His church strong. Since there are many kinds of strength, it is important to consider how Paul describes the strength he is seeking.
This strength is a spiritual gift. It comes as a gift of God’s grace through the work of the Holy Spirit. It builds faith and closeness to Christ in the heart of the believer. That is why we must ask God to bless His church with this strength. It is His and His alone to give.
This strength is revealed in a knowledge of God’s love. As the Spirit grounds the believer in the love of God by faith, the believer experiences that love and comes to understand its degree, at least to a point. What the believer learns is that God’s love is greater than our minds will ever truly comprehend! Thus, we pray that the church will become overwhelmed by the love of God.
This strength turns the church into a spiritual house where God is pleased to dwell. Paul goes as far as to speak of the fullness of God dwelling in His church—a phrase similar to that he uses to describe Christ in Colossians 2:9. In this sense, we pray that the church will become the true body of Christ!
What am I praying for you today? I am praying Ephesians 3:14-19!