December 16 (Daily reading: Ephesians) In Ephesians 3:14–21 (NIV), Paul wrote a prayer that gives insight into the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit. By the granting of his requests, power will be demonstrated in and through our lives. The first request is stated: “I pray that he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith” (vv. 16–17). Christ in us means receiving the power of the Holy Spirit!
The second request is: “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” (vv. 17–18). Paul prayed for “power to grasp” the amazing, profound, and life-changing love of Christ. He used two verbs to describe our position: “being rooted and grounded in love.” When we are deeply rooted in Christ’s love, we can withstand the storms of life like a tree with deep roots. When our lives are grounded on Christ’s love, we can stand firm like a skyscraper because of its solid foundation. Because of the presence of the Holy Spirit in us, we are enabled “to know this love (of Christ) that surpasses knowledge” (v. 19).
Paul’s third request describes a power that defies human understanding: “that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God” (v. 19). Just imagine—having God’s fullness—when we are “filled with the Spirit” (Eph. 5:18). Paul concluded his prayer by again alluding to the power of the Holy Spirit. God can do all this and more by “his power that is at work with us” (v. 20). (Adapted from my book, “From West Texas to the French West Indies and Back Again,” pages 9-11).
– Al Gary