Do you ever find yourself wishing that life were different? I’ve caught myself doing this lately! But I’m learning that while it may not be possible for all of our outward circumstances to improve to make life better, it is possible for the quality of our inner life to change so dramatically that we begin to experience life as it was meant to be.
The apostle Paul was a great example of this principle. In Acts 16 we see Paul and Silas in prison, singing! I have often wondered why more people do not experience that level of inner tranquility that would allow them to sing praises to God even in the most horrendous circumstances. (First-century prisons would make twenty-first century prisons look like luxury hotels by comparison!)
Paul’s New Testament writings reveal an ability to live a victorious life in spite of the most severe outward circumstances. He encourages Christians in spite of his own hardships-like being shipwrecked, going hungry, and being publicly stoned and even imprisoned. What an amazing attitude he received from the Lord.
Ephesians 3:14-21 encourages us to experience the victorious life that Christ made possible. “14For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15from whom his whole family[a] in heaven and on earth derives its name. 16I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
20Now 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, 21to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever!”
Heavenly Father we thank you for the gift of Christ and praise you for making it possible for us to experience the fullness of Christ through the presence of the Holy Spirit. Keep our minds and hearts focused on you. Give us courage to welcome the transforming power of the Holy Spirit especially when that means significant change. Give us eyes to see and ears to hear. And help us to be doers of the Word! Amen.