Reading (Ephesians 1:15-23)
For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love towards all the saints, I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power towards us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.
How observant are you? In particular how well do you know what the things around your own home, or indeed of other homes that you frequent, look like? Most of us would probably say that we have a pretty good idea of what the things in our houses look like, especially things that are in rooms that we regularly use.
As you will know I spend part of my week in Lincoln staying in my mum’s house, so I would consider that I know her house and its contents quite well, especially the things in the spare bedroom where I sleep. However, the other morning, while lying in bed, I was looking at the curtains. I thought I knew the pattern on the curtains well. In my head the curtains were a series of ellipses which all overlapped each other in a uniform pattern. As far as I was concerned the ellipses where all in line with each other. However, the closer I looked at the pattern, the more I saw that actually they weren’t all in line with each other at all, some of the ellipses were higher up than the others and some dropped down slightly. I had never noticed this before yet I had seen those curtains many times.
The difference some would say was that although I had looked at the curtains many times before I had not stopped to look at them properly. I had not studied the pattern; I had only been mildly aware of what the pattern was and made assumptions about what was actually going on.
In the first chapter of the letter to the Ephesians we have this lovely prayer of Pauls for the people in the church at Ephesus where he prays that they will have the eyes of their hearts enlightened so that they may know what is the hope to which they have been called. He is praying that they will receive wisdom and revelation. This is something that as Christians we would all aspire to, but it requires us to look properly, with open and enlightened hearts. We need to ensure that we don’t make assumptions after just a cursory glance. Paul’s prayer is one that we could pray both for ourselves and also for our fellow Christians everywhere.
Father God, help me to see you more clearly.
Song: Open the eyes of my heart (MP 1100)