During the Christmas season I have a vivid childhood memory of pulling down the big J.C. Penny’s catalogue in the front closest of our home and sprawling on the living room floor and drooling over the latest Christmas toys. Yes, I would make and my wish list and every so often on Christmas Eve the wish became a reality. Like the year I got the G.I. Joe helicopter or another year I opened a racecar track!
Now that I’m all grown up, I’m trying to learn how to become a child again and maintain that same passion I had when I compiled my wish list. Recently I pulled my Bible out of my backpack and read from the book of Ephesians. The verses in chapter 1 certainly caught my attention. They are actually three requests that Paul prays for the Ephesian church. This is the first request from Ephesians 1:17
I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation so that you may know him better.
The Holy Spirit caused this request/prayer to fly off the page and into my heart. I wrote the verse on a notecard and decided to daily pray this prayer, put it on my wish list if you will. But I am not only asking God to delivery this spiritual blessing to me but also to the people I dearly love and minister to.
The other thing that struck me about this verse is that it matches the vision for Oceans Ministries ….To make the love of the Father known to spiritual and physical orphans around the world.
This first request of Paul in verse 17 emulates the reason why this ministry began and the burning passion of what Oceans Ministries hopes to accomplish in the lives of others. The healing that our world needs, the hope our hurting country longs for, and the power the church of Christ needs so desperately flows from a revelation of the Father’s love. That is why Paul begins his prayer by asking the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ to flood the church with the Spirit of wisdom and revelation so that they may know the Father better… As I weekly minster on the streets of Denver, share the vision presented in Journey to Father’s Heart to prisoners, churches, etc. I see the deep wounds and pain that can only be healed by heart knowledge. The heart knowledge obtained from the Father’s love. This is the only cure for the curses in our sinful world.
This first request to receive the Spirit of wisdom and revelation points to the fact that we need the Spirit to open our minds so that we may know who the Father is. This Father who is good and wants to give good gifts to His children. We come to know His goodness when we see the gift of His Son Jesus. Jesus was born as a spotless lamb, died in our place, took on our curse of sin, so that we can be adopted children and enter into the Father’s love filled home.
This is the greatest of all gifts, knowing our true Daddy who loves us fully in His Son Jesus. Until we grasp the revelation of a Good Father we limit the abundant life available and instead live as insecure children writing a long wish list filled with gifts that will never satisfy the soul.
So pull your Bible out, turn to Eph. 1:15-23 and make this prayer your Christmas wish list, ask your Father to reveal His goodness and love to you and those around you. Those who come to know their Father will forever live in the security of His love which has the power to transform our fractured world for His glory!
Oh….and the other two-requests flow out of this first one. Everything in life is radically impacted by our relationship to their Heavenly Father and will be in the next few blogs. Go ahead and read ahead to get a sneak peek!