September 25, 2018 • Life for Leaders
I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
Visiting the Grand Canyon is on my bucket list. Though I have seen it from the air many times on plane flights, I’ve never stood on the rim of the Grand Canyon. Nor have I hiked down into its depths or floated along its river.
My friend John not only visited the Grand Canyon this past summer, but he actually went on a several-day raft trip down the middle of it. His descriptions of the canyon are astounding. How vast it appears from the bottom! John’s sense of the magnitude of the Grand Canyon greatly exceeds my own.
If the Apostle Paul had seen what John saw last summer, I wonder if he might have envisioned the Grand Canyon when he wrote Ephesians 3:18. There, Paul speaks of “how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ.” It is wider and longer and higher and deeper than anything we can imagine.
It’s easy for us to say that Christ loves us. But do we really get the vastness of his love? Do we understand just how gigantic Christ’s love really is? If you’re like me, you’ll quickly answer, “no.” I can so easily limit Christ’s love for me. Perhaps you can relate.
Paul once prayed for the recipients of his letter called Ephesians, that they might grasp the magnitude of Christ’s love. Today, I echo his prayer. By God’s grace, may we come to know more truly and fully the “Grand Canyon” of Christ’s love for us. May we know his love when we’re worshiping him in church and when we’re serving him at work. May we know his love when we’re rejoicing and when we’re sorrowing. May the love of Christ encourage us, renew us, and fill us with love for others.
Something to Think About:
In addition to the Grand Canyon, what do the adjectives “wide, long, high, and deep” remind you of?
Do you ever doubt or diminish Christ’s love for you? When? Why?
What helps you to grasp the magnitude of Christ’s love for you?
Something to Do:
Try to picture the love of Christ in spatial terms, in all of its width, length, height, and depth. Ask the Lord to give you a new vision of just how much he loves you.
Lord Jesus, thank you for the vastness of your love for me. Help me, I pray, to know your love more truly and deeply. And as I grasp the magnitude of your love, may I love others as you have loved me. Amen.
Explore more at the Theology of Work Project:
Earthquake Poem by Thomas Merton, based on Isaiah 52
Dr. Mark D. Roberts is a Senior Strategist for Fuller’s Max De Pree Center for Leadership, where he focuses on the spiritual development and thriving of leaders. He is the principal writer of the daily devotional, Life for Leaders, and the founder of the De Pree Center’s Flourishing in the Third Third of Life Initiative. Previously, Mark was the Executive Director of the De Pree Center, the lead pastor of a church in Southern California, and the Senior Director of Laity Lodge in Texas. He has written eight books, dozens of articles, and over 2,500 devotions that help people discover the difference God makes in their daily life and leadership. With a Ph.D. in New Testament from Harvard, Mark teaches at Fuller Seminary, most recently in his D.Min. cohort on “Faith, Work, Economics, and Vocation.” Mark is married to Linda, a marriage and family counselor, spiritual director, and executive coach. Their two grown children are educators on the high school and college level.