I love this passage of scripture but can often struggle to grasp the full extent and significance of what is being said in it, as it is so vast!
It is a doxology which sums up the prayer the Apostle Paul prays for the Ephesian church which immediately precedes it (3:16-19…read it…it’s amazing!). A prayer that they may know the all-encompassing width, length, height and depth of God’s love, and be so rooted and grounded in this love and divine infilling that they both live in it and serve through it, overflowing with the full measure of God.
In Christ Jesus, God reveals a cross-shaped love that is wide enough to cross the whole of Eurasia…indeed wide enough to include every person in the world. A love that is long enough to last a thousand generations and beyond…even for all eternity. A love that is high enough to lift us out of any trouble or circumstance and present us before God spotless and blameless …take us even to the very heights of heaven. A love that is deep enough to plumb the depths of hell itself as it relentlessly seeks the lost and broken…and can reach everyone and anyone who calls on the name of the Lord, no matter where they are or what they have done.
Yet it gets even better that that! For in these next words Paul incredibly tells us that when we think of all of this, wondrous as it is, we’re only just getting started. For this love of God, revealed in Jesus, is so incomparable our words, thoughts and imagination will never be able to grasp it. It is so much more than we can possibly conceive.
Just think about it. In His Son and by His Spirit God has blessed the church with all we need and more. He has given us everything we need to know him, be saved by him…ransomed, healed, restored and forgiven. All we need to live holy lives, to reflect his glory where he has placed us and to join him on His mission to the world He loves. That in the calling we have to love Him and love our neighbour we have been fully equipped to respond to this calling. We have everything we need…and more!
Therefore, when I think of Eurasia and what God has called us as His church to be, I could look at the vastness of the Region, the diversity of people and cultures, the enormous challenges we have and the sheer extent of the task before us and it could be overwhelming. Yet I remember these words and tell myself, ‘No, whatever we need we have enough.. and more! Whatever we face we have been given the grace to come through it…and more! Anything that comes our way…any challenge or opportunity…in Jesus and by His Spirit we have more than we need to do what God calls us to do’
That is why in all the Regional Priorities I share with the Eurasian Nazarene church I have prefixed them with more. All these areas of priority we are currently engaged in and in most cases doing well. But in every area of mission and ministry there is more.
More of God in us. More of Christ through us. More people to love, serve and reach. In the church more Christ-likeness, more holy living, more missional purpose.
I pray you will see this and in the wonderful opportunities we have been given by God, locally, across our Districts, Fields and Region, and in partnership with the Global church family, together we will strive to see the fullness of God in and through us accomplish more than we could ask, imagine or even hope for.
Rev Jim Ritchie