June 16, 2019 | Timothy Peace
UNITY IN CHRIST, AND CHRIST ALONE
Paul’s prayer in Ephesians 3:14-21 is such an encouragement. It reads as follows:
For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. 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. Ephesians 3:14-21 NIV
Paul prays for “all generations” of Christians, for all time, starting with the Christians receiving this letter, that they will be deeply “rooted and established” in the love of Christ, by the grace of God. Moreover, he starts by noting that it is by God’s grace that “every family in heaven and on earth derives its name.”
I find this passage inspiring for two reasons: 1. It is Paul’s goal for all Christians to grow, deeply, in their faithfulness to Jesus, and 2. It is this pursuit to be deeply rooted in Jesus that unites all Christians. In a world where we draw battle lines based on lesser affinities, it is a weight off of our shoulders to know that the only affinity that Christians are called to share is openness to God’s grace, given through Jesus.
I can’t help but think what the church would be like if every one of us opened ourselves up, daily, to God’s work in our lives and if all of us let that openness be the reason, and only reason, why we come together. Furthermore, in coming together in Christ, we will eliminate the power of the forces that divide us, so that we can be a light in a dark world that needs the love of God to reign supreme.