Friday, November 4, 2011

A Prayer for Hope

Ephesians 1:17-19 (NASB)
17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him.

Lord Jesus--Hope really depends on my ability to see the world around me as you see it . It is fall outside as I write this and the early morning darkness surrounds me. From this vantage point, I can not tell if it is early morning or the middle of the night. It is just a bit after 6 am and it could be mid-night.  It is before the time change, dark outside. If it weren't for the sun that will rise in just a few minutes I would be left wondering.

Hope is like that so much of the time. It is only by the power of God working in my heart that hope is visible.  It is by the work of the Holy Spirit expressed in this heart wide open to your grace that I can get a glimmering of the hope that you want to show me. Revelation comes in all kinds of packaging. 

18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,

Lord Jesus--Sometimes, I feel like a puppy that just isn't ready to see yet. Eyes not yet fully formed waiting for for the first time to see the light of day. The piece that catches me by surprise is that these eyes are sealed shut at times that are unexpected. I am thinking that I get it and then just as quickly it escapes from me. I find myself struggling to see what was there just a few minutes ago in clarity.

Or maybe the feeling is more like a baby that is just struggling to open their eyes for the first time in the bright light of planet Earth.  It is strange, wonderful, and cold all at the same time.  Even babies with time gain understanding of the movements and meanings of the images that surround them.

The prayer of Paul for this infant church in the middle of the pagan Roman culture that surrounded them was simple. Give them open eyes so they know clearly the hope that is tied to the fact that they have been called into a relationship with you.  The rich textures and colors of the glory that awaits.

19 and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might...

Lord Jesus--The same power that raised you from the grave is at work in this heart of mine in your revealing power to show me again hope.   You don't have to wait for the sun to rise for hope to finds its place in me.

So the point of Paul's prayer for this church in Ephesus is that the same power that raised you from the dead will show them the limitless horizons that await your people...your called out ones.

Lord Jesus--Help me to live out this kind of vision of hope in the day waits before me.  In the middle of it all you are speaking words of grace, glory and hope to me even when I am too new to it all to really understand it.

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