“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.”
Did you ever feel like you were wasting your breath when praying? Did you ever feel you were talking to yourself or that your prayer wouldn’t get past the ceiling?
I have heard those tempting thoughts of the Evil One, the insinuations against our heavenly Father. The old hymn is right on the mark:
“Satan trembles when he sees the weakest saint upon their knees.” We can be encouraged to pray this prayer of the apostle Paul as he simply prays God’s great promises for us. We might think of prayer like a checking account requiring two signatures. In Scripture, God signs His name to His promises to us, and then, by prayer, we sign our name, saying our heartfelt, “Amen!”
Who would imagine praying to be filled up to all the fullness of God! But God had big plans for us, creating us “in his image” (Genesis 1:27), making us “a little lower than God” (Psalm 8:5). It was God’s eternal purpose that “destined us for adoption as children through Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 1:5), and “predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son” (Romans 8:29). It is God’s purpose that we desire to become more and more like Jesus! “The whole Godhead is our possession; for the fullness of God is no far-off remote treasure that lies beyond human grasp and outside of human experience.” (Alexander MacLaren, Expositions of Holy Scripture: Ephesians)
Gregory of Nyssa was a fourth-century church father best known for his writings on the Trinity and robust defense of Biblical orthodoxy. But Gregory also wrote passionately about the eternal transformation of believers into the likeness of Jesus Christ. God is infinite, and we are finite, so there will always be more for us to learn and enjoy of God’s wonder and love!
Gregory drew on the words of the apostle Paul to the Philippians believers about ever-growing: “I do not consider that I have made it my own; but this one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining towards what lies ahead” (Philippians 3:13).
“A person who approaches that fountain marvels at the endless stream of water always gushing forth and bubbling out; never could he say that he has seen all the water. In the same way, the person looking at the divine, invisible beauty will always discover it anew, since it will be seen as something newer and more wondrous in comparison with what he had already comprehended.”(Gregory of Nyssa, Commentary on the Song of Songs)
How wondrous to anticipate and to prepare for such glory! As soon as we ascend to a level on God’s stairway of love, He draws us ever higher! It will take eternity to be filled up to all the fullness of God so that our journey is an unending desire to have more and more of God. “When we’ve been there ten thousand years, bright shining as the sun, we’ve no less days to sing God’s praise than when we’ve first begun!”
THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
“The moment the Spirit has quickened to life in regeneration our whole being senses its kinship to God and leaps up in joyous recognition…It is, however, not an end but an inception, for now, begins the glorious pursuit, the heart’s happy exploration of the infinite riches of the Godhead.” A. W. Tozer