Ephesians 1:15-23

I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this reason I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers. I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power.

God put this power to work in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the age to come. And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all. Ephesians 1:15-23

It never occurred to me, when God saw fit to schedule my first opportunity to work as an associate pastor at a congregation here in Houston, that I would spend the rest of my life in this town. Or that I would come to realize what a wonderful blessing that has been. Especially now that I have reached that stage in ministry where children I baptized have reached out to me to perform their weddings. And where great friends of mine have now gotten ever closer, and have passed over, to the other side.

There are massive cemeteries right along the highway that connects the places where I have served. I drive by it often. I have been part of many funerals there. Sometimes I don’t even notice them. Sometimes I do. Every time that I’m there for a funeral I realize the disconnect between those who are grieving and those who are just driving by.

Houston has a huge medical center. A tremendous complex of hospitals and medical schools and research facilities. It is just down the street from our church. There too it is so easy to just drive on by without realizing the gut wrenching realities that people are facing in their lives inside each of those buildings. All the people there to help all the people there who hurt.

I helped a couple get married last Saturday. This Sunday I will be privileged to speak those holy words as I baptize the third child born to a young couple at Faith. Saturday night we will host a famous Chinese evangelist as she sings and shares her faith with those who come. All of this because of the mysterious movement of God’s Holy Spirit, whose power continues to infuse us with the power of faith that enlightens the eyes of our hearts.

We worry so much about what we believe is entirely up to us. That is the price we pay when we think that life is all about us. But when we are given those precious moments of insight, those little glimpses into the power and presence of God, then we are able to realize that God is up to something far bigger, far better, far more beautiful, than we could ever imagine. Trust God in all things and you are able then to reconnect the disparate moments of your life and know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power.

Let us pray: Dear Lord, from cradle to grave and beyond, you have caught us up into the mystery of your love, the fellowship of the church, the glory of creation, and the greater glory yet to come. Continue to open the eyes of our hearts that we might truly see. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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