Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. ~ Ephesians 3:20-21 (NIV)
I don’t know you, but it’s safe to say that your prayers are probably too small. Sure, you pray for health, a new job, and even children. And those are good prayers! But God is inviting you to make even bigger requests.
Martin Luther said: Imagine that the richest ruler in the world invited a poor beggar to ask for whatever he wanted. Suppose that beggar only asked for a ladle of soup. Wouldn’t the ruler be insulted by such a request? We also insult God when he promises us inexpressible riches and all we do is ask for a lousy piece of bread. (Paraphrase from the Large Catechism)
Luther is saying that most of our prayers are just “bread prayers”. It’s time we ask the King of the Universe for more. So, what is the big prayer that God is inviting us to ask? Paul gives us an example: “I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all of God’s people to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ” (Ephesians 3:17-18).
Can you think of a bigger prayer than that? What could be better than completely grasping the love of God in Jesus? Imagine how you would speak to your spouse, if you could grasp the fullness of God’s love. Imagine how you would face debt or addiction, if you could grasp the fullness of God’s love. Imagine how you would face death if you could grasp the fullness of God’s love. This kind of prayer would radically change your life.
But how is this possible? How can we grasp the extensiveness of God’s love in Christ? Do we wonder how God could even answer such a big prayer? Read again Paul’s answer to those questions: “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen” (Ephesians 3:20-21).
God is able to do more than you ask or imagine, and he is at work within you! He is even able to give you the power to begin to grasp the greatness of his love for you in Christ. So, giving glory to God, pray that big prayer.
Lord God, more than anything else we pray that you would give us the ability to grasp how wide, long, high and deep is your love for us in Jesus Christ. Dwell in us with that love, so that it may motivate everything we do. In Jesus’ name. Amen.