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Tuesday, May 15, 2018

We Can Have Both

I sometimes struggle with knowing exactly how to pray.  It’s not that there is any one right way, but the evolution of my theology can make for some interesting conversations with God.

Ephesians 3:14-21:For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth takes its name.  I pray that, according to the riches of his glory, he may grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, as you are being rooted and grounded in love.  I pray that you may have the power 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, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.  Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

This is mind blowing stuff.  Paul prays that the Ephesians might be able to comprehend that which is incomprehensible.  He prays for the impossible, and then he acts as if this is completely reasonable, since the God we can’t fully comprehend can do more than we can imagine.  It’s as if Paul is asking God to help us understand what cannot be understood, and he expects that might actually happen, even though he can’t possibly expect it.  This is often how I pray.

But I think we have to take a step back for a moment, because I don’t want to miss the part where we are strengthened by the power of the Holy Spirit, which allows us to be rooted and grounded in love.  I don’t want to miss that part, because I think we can all have that.  And, I also think it’s the most important part, particularly when comprehension and knowledge are elusive.

I really like to know stuff.  A lot.  In fact, I admit the quest for knowledge can be overwhelming and consuming, at times, and I am far more unapologetic than Solomon (see Ecclesiastes).  I wholeheartedly believe this thirst is a part of who we are and who we were created to be.  But I also have to remember that we were first created to love, and the measure of that love is infinite in nature.  

It's not a binary choice, though... this non-existent knowledge vs. love dichotomy.  Love is the greatest, but we can have both.

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