The Love of God

"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 the fullness of God."  Ephesians 3:17b-18 (NIV)

Any time I slow down to read this passage (not rush through it), the words take my breath away.  I still for a moment and consider it.

Paul prayed for us to have power.  He wanted us to have the power it takes to take hold of the love that is beyond knowledge.

The love Paul wants us to grasp is a love that births life.  God created those that He loves.  The vast majority of parents love their children, even if they don't always particularly like them.  

God's love for His children is far greater.

The love Paul wants us to grasp is a love that prompts sacrifice.  When the place I call home was hit by one of the worst tornadoes our country has seen, the hours and days following were filled with beautiful stories of sacrifice, both for the lives of loved ones - click here to read about Don and Bethany  and strangers - click here to read about Christopher and click here to read about Dean.

God's sacrifice for His children was much greater.  We can talk about it, but we can't begin to understand the depth of Jesus' sacrifice on the cross.  

Ridicule by those He created and loves.  

Injury and then death at the hands that He shaped.  

The weight of the whole world's sin on His back.  

The severing of the perfect relationship between Father and Son.  

The love of God is enormous, beyond the ability of our flesh to even begin to comprehend, but Paul asks God to give us the power necessary to take hold of it.  

Consider praying Paul's prayer for yourself and your family on a regular basis.  Paul tells us the reason for his prayer is so that we will be filled with God.  People who are filled with God are lovers of God and lovers of others.  People who are filled with God are world-changers and difference-makers.  People filled with God become the hands and feet of God in the world they live in.

"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, forever and ever! Amen."  Ephesians 3:20-21 NIV

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13 Responses to The Love of God

  1. A lovely interpretation of this passage from Ephesians. The fact that love is stronger than knowledge hints at faith. Beautiful thoughts for reflection.

  2. Barbara Caughey MooreOctober 13, 2013 at 9:10 PM

    This is beautiful! I love that power that comes from the Spirit that allows us to be more fully aware of Gods love for us. How often we just go through life without fully grasping this INCREDIBLE GIFT!

  3. It's pretty amazing, of all the things Paul could have prayed for, he prayed this! Thank you for coming by, Barbara!

  4. I'm so glad you enjoyed it, Amanda. I would love to hear your thoughts on the passage if you decide to write about it as well.

  5. Barbara Caughey MooreOctober 13, 2013 at 9:25 PM

    Kirra, I just read this and have a thought. I believe we need to really look at how we view this question. Finding a church that fits OUR beliefs is almost impossible, like you said. We will never find one that fits us perfectly. But if we are looking for that, aren't we making ourselves the authority of what is true. The scripture says in 1 Tim 3:15, "if I am delayed, you will know how people ought to conduct themselves in God’s household, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth." Not everything our church teaches will be easy to hear or agree with, but how do we know what is true? Is it our decision to decide if our church is right or could there be a reason our church teaches something that we just don't understand yet. Did God leave us with some way to know what is true? We all have so many different ways to interpret the same Scripture and I think you raise a really interesting question. I'd love to chat more about this.

  6. Kirra, in all honesty, you are FAR more eloquent on religious quotations and interpretations than me. I would venture to say that you'd be a PERFECT writer of religious-based writing prompts. I think your choices of topics are original and your POVs are lovely.

  7. Thank you for the sweet compliments!

  8. I don't disagree. It is necessary for us to be pliable and teachable. But there are a few points on which I am unwilling to move. I am sure you have a few yourself. Is that where you draw the line? Is it okay to attend a church that has a different millennial view than you do? What about their views on baptism? The first issue I don't see as quite as important, and honestly I haven't even landed anywhere on that one, but certain aspects of baptism I am less willing to compromise on. Do I sit week after week under a teacher who contradicts my beliefs on something as important as baptism?

    For several years now, I have been bothered by the lack of authority the church has over the lives of people. As a high school student, my youth minister had real power over my life and what I believed, but today, I am very disconnected from the leadership of my church. I suppose now that I am helping with the kids on Wednesdays, it is different, but that's more about the kids than about me. If I believe something differently than the rest of the church, it's hardly an issue to them unless I start teaching the kids.

    I have so many thoughts running through my mind about this, but I can't even articulate them all. I feel like I'm rambling now, but I'd love to continue discussing it with you.

  9. Hi Kirra. As I think of this love that surpasses knowledge, I am again made mindful of the trap of an intellectual gospel. It seems that many, many churches and denominations adhere to an intellectual gospel. That being a gospel that teaches 'know this', 'do this', 'act like this', etc. We end up walking in 'lock step' with those around us but never experience the relational side of Christianity. To me, a love that surpasses knowledge can never be understood, acknowledged, accepted, or grasp if our only understanding of Christianity is intellectual. With a relational gospel, we will never walk in lock step because, just like human relations, each one of us is different and that relationship plays out differently with each one of us.

    I pray that we ALL begin to understand the relational side of Christianity and begin to grasp that love that surpasses knowledge.

  10. Steve, I agree. There is certainly a place for the intellectual in the gospel, but there is much more to it than that! I would argue that the relational/emotional side is equal in importance to the intellectual side. A purely intellectual faith loses its purpose, but a purely emotional/relational gospel loses its stability.

  11. A balance is absolutely critical. However, the relational must be the core of our walk. The intellectual must come out of the relationship. In life, we are motivated to action be emotions. Our love for Jesus becomes the motivation for action. The action does not generate the love.

  12. God sheds his LOVE abroad by using others. What a testimony how Christians pitched in to give and show love in tangible ways.

  13. Thank you for coming by, Hazel! I love hearing stories about how the amazing ways Christians respond in ordinary and extraordinary situations.


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