Fresh Faith: Ephesians
October 21, 2018
Petie Kinder • Fresh Faith: Ephesians • Ephesians 3
Series: Fresh Faith: Ephesians
Message: Different, but Together
Pastor: Petie Kinder
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Study Guide (PDF)
I hear there was a football game last night. And I don’t know why everyone’s so excited to see my Kentucky Wildcats beat Vanderbilt yesterday. It’s a weird, weird thing for everybody in Indiana to get excited about, but… Nah, Purdue fans, this is your time to shine! This is your time to be so happy. You should be so happy today. Ohio State fans, I’m so sorry. We’re glad you’re at church. We mourn with those who mourn and we rejoice with those who rejoice.Hey, we’re glad to have you. My name’s Petie. I’m one of the pastors here. I gotta warn you, I’m coming in a little bit hot today. I’m coming fresh off vacation. I spent a week with my family, with my little kids, at the beach just soaking up the memories and soaking up all the love, and so that also means I’m coming back with a little bit of an extra oomph, a little extra rest. So you all are the beneficiaries or the recipients of that extra oomph, so just get ready; I’m coming in a little bit hot today. You have been warned. You’ve been warned.Grab a Bible and get to Ephesians chapter 3. We’re going to be in Ephesians 3 today. If you don’t have a Bible, no worries. We’ll have it on the screen behind me for you.One of the things that I realize coming off vacation is there is a new sheriff in town when it comes to how adults waste their time. In previous generations, on a trip like I was just on—by the way, I drew a lucky hand where my parents and my in-laws love each other and they get along and so we all vacation together, which is crazy, but it works for us.So I found this interesting thing. In generations previous on a trip like this, adults may have wasted their time in the evenings by watching TV together or by reading a book or something productive. Now what happens, it doesn’t matter if you’re young or you’re old—it’s totally cross-generational—the new sheriff in town for adults to waste time is social media.It was amazing. We put the kids to bed and within 5 or 10 minutes, every single person in the house, every adult would have their phone up scrolling through Instagram, scrolling through Facebook, scrolling through Twitter.And I’m not hatin’ on social media. I’m not hatin’. I actually love social media. I think it has revealed some things to us about ourselves, about humanity, that we maybe thought were true but now we know they’re true.For instance, I think social media has revealed to us that we as humans are inherently funny people. We have a sense of humor. You cannot get on social media and not see something new and hilarious that happens just about every day. This is one of the ways that my wife and I waste time in the evenings is we look at stupid YouTube videos. So, one of our favorites is the milk jug-throwing-prank video. Have you guys ever seen milk jug-throwing-prank video? Go ahead and throw that video up here.Someone thought it’d be a good idea to just grab jugs of milk and act like you’re falling and just throw them and then video it. This is all they do. There are hours of these videos on here. These poor people are like so concerned for them. This is my favorite. Watch. This sweet lady’s like: what is happening. She offers him her cart…and he still slips! Oh, it’s perfect! It’s perfect! This is brilliant. This has revealed in our nature deep down, God has given us a sense of humor. One of my favorite ones that just happened was on Twitter a few weeks ago. It was a hashtag that went around called #white people love to say. I don’t know if you saw #white people love to say, but there are some of these that were just hilarious. I love them because they were way too true, and I say all of them. Let’s go to the first one. White people love saying things like “here comes trouble” with a big grin on their face when they see someone they know out in public. I’ve said that. I’ve said that for sure.White people love saying “clean as a whistle” after cleaning anything. I think I just said that yesterday.Next one: White people love saying “will you pack me in your suitcase” when you’re going on vacation. My dad said that for sure.Next one: White people love saying “it went down the wrong pipe” after choking. Like we’ve got pipes around here.Next one—this is my favorite: White people love saying “it’s because you’re so sweet” when you get bit by mosquitos. I say this stuff all the time and it’s so funny because then I asked one of my black friends like, “Hey, do you ever say this stuff?” I read him a few and he just looked at me and smiled. He was like, “No, no. I’ve never said that.” I love it. Social media has shown us that we are pretty funny people, but it’s also shown us some other things about ourselves that are maybe not so pleasant and not so fun because we don’t just go to social media to get our dose of comedic relief; we go to social media to get our news. We go to social media to express our views and our opinions and our perspectives and to read other people’s views and other people’s opinions and other people’s perspectives. And what this has revealed to us is that, as humans, we have this inherent tendency to surround ourselves with people who are mostly just like us. When’s the last time you saw someone post something on social media that you didn’t agree with, that you strongly disagreed with, and you know what happened in your heart; you were tempted to click that little button that says unfriend.Or maybe not unfriend. You can do what Facebook allows now, which is just unfollow, which means you can still be friends, like they still see you as a friend; you just don’t see anything they do, which is super crazy, like the complexities of social media.But this is what we do. We follow people and we share things that agree with our perspective. We mostly surround ourselves with people who look, think, talk, act, and see the world just like we do.This was true before social media because when you think about your friend groups, you think about the people whom you love, you think about the people you were closest to, they’re mostly people who think, look, talk, act, and are around the same age range as you. This is just who we are. We surround ourselves with same. But the problem with that that Ephesians 3 is going to reveal to us today is that if we’re going to fight for a fresh faith, and that’s what this whole series is about—how do we fight for a fresh faith, like not a stale faith that just sits on the shelf until Sundays and then we pull it out and use it on Sundays and then stick it back on the shelf for Monday through Saturday, not a stale faith but like a fresh faith that’s alive and it’s growing and it’s making a difference. If we’re going to fight for a fresh faith, it actually requires different. It actually requires different people to be around, and this is actually how God set it up from the beginning.Let’s jump into Ephesians chapter 3. We’re going to start with verse 6, and let’s read it. It says this: “And this is God’s plan:” Sorry, Drake, but this is God’s plan he had a long time ago. “Both Gentiles and Jews who believe the Good News share equally in the riches inherited by God’s children. Both are part of the same body, and both enjoy the promise of blessings because they belong to Christ Jesus. By God’s grace and mighty power, I have been given the privilege of serving him by spreading this Good News.” Now pause for a second. That first line that came out there says, “This is God’s plan. Both Gentiles and Jews who believe the Good News share equally…” That right there would have dropped the jaws of people in the first century. This whole concept would’ve changed the spiritual landscape for the Jewish people in the first century. To really understand that verse and understand its magnitude, you have to back up for a second. You have to back up and you have to think about the Old Testament as a whole for a second. Now if you’re not familiar with the Old Testament it’s okay, but when you go back and read through the Old Testament, you see that it’s the story of God’s relationship with one country, with one nation, the nation of Israel.So it chronicles God’s special relationship with them. God leads them out of slavery. He puts them into a country of their own. He works through kings and wars and famines, and it’s God’s special relationship with Israel. So it’s no wonder then that when you get to the New Testament and you start reading about the Jewish people, they thought that they were the golden boys and girls. They thought that they were God’s chosen golden boys and girls. And no wonder, right? Because all they knew up to that point was God’s special relationship with Israel. I mean, just think about the word for a second, Gentile. That’s not a word that we use today in our normal vernacular, but when you read the Bible you see it all the time.The word Gentile was a word that Jews came up with to describe anyone who wasn’t them. They didn’t even bother to come up with words for different people groups. It was like, “It’s us and it’s all y’all.” It’s kind of how I feel about Kentucky basketball living in Indiana. As a Kentucky basketball fan, it’s like Kentucky against all y’all: Purdue, IU, it don’t matter. If you ain’t with us, you’re against us.This is how the Jews felt. There’s us and there’s all y’all. Again, this would’ve made sense to them because this is all they knew, but God’s plan was always bigger than one people group. God’s plan was always bigger than just the nation of Israel. In fact, go back to Genesis with me for a second. You don’t need to turn there; I’ll put the verse on the screen for you, but Genesis 22. This is a promise that God made to Abraham. Father Abraham? You know, “Father Abraham had many sons…” That whole thing? I don’t know that because I didn’t grow up in church, but that was a bone I’m throwing to those of you who did grow up in church. I heard that was a song. It’s a weird song, okay? Just so you know, it sounds super weird.Here we go. Here’s what he says to Abraham. He says, “I will certainly bless you. I will multiply your descendants beyond number…” What a promise. “…like the stars in the sky and the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will conquer the cities of their enemies.” What a promise. And here it is. Here’s the real big part of it. “And through your descendants all the nations of the earth will be blessed—all because you have obeyed me.” You see, God’s plan from the get-go—yes, it started with the nation of Israel, but it was always bigger. From the very beginning in the book of Genesis, he says I’m going to bless the entire world through your descendants. It was always more than just them. It was always with the world in mind.But you see the Jews, when you get to the time of Jesus, they saw this promise as a promise of political dominance. When they see this, like, “…through your descendants all the nations of the earth will be blessed…,” what they thought was, “Awesome! That means that like Israel’s going to be the super power and we’re going to be the ones who are distributing food to people and we’re going to be the ones who are blessing people and like the whole world will be blessed because we’re going to be in control.” They saw the promise as political dominance, which is why they struggled so much with Jesus. When you read your New Testament, you say, “Man, it seems like the Jewish people are having a hard time getting on board with Jesus.” This is why. Because Jesus comes along and he starts leading and he starts doing his thing and creating his movement of followers with zero political power. Seemingly disinterested in the political game. He could have garnered all the followers that he had and turned it into a political movement but didn’t. Zero political power.This is why their jaws would’ve hit the floor when Paul says both Jews and Gentiles. Jews and all y’all share equally in the riches and the blessings of following Jesus because God’s plan from the very beginning was always to bring different people together through Jesus. God’s plan from the very beginning was always to bring different people together through Jesus. It was how he set the whole thing up. This didn’t take him by surprise. He knew he was going to work through Israel and then he knew he was going to get it to the rest of the world, and that’s how he wanted it to be. Because God’s love does not discriminate. It doesn’t matter if you’re black, if you’re white, if you’re brown, if you’re rich or you’re poor, if you’re young or you’re old or you’re middle-aged or you don’t know which you are, which means you’re probably old. It doesn’t matter like what team you prefer, what kind of music you prefer, what your cultural background is. It doesn’t matter if you’ve got an awesome home or you’re homeless. It doesn’t matter who you are, what you’ve done, where you come from. God’s love doesn’t discriminate. If you believe in Jesus, he’s for you and you have complete and total access. There’s no more privilege. There’s no more favoritism. There’s no more preference shown. You’re in. If you believe in and you follow Jesus, you’re in because God’s plan from the get-go was to bring different people together through Jesus.So the Jews who started to understand this are like, “Okay, okay, okay, okay. So he loves everybody, okay, okay.” But still—when you read the book of Acts you see this—but still the Jewish people thought, “They all have to become Jewish though, right? Like I know God loves them and that’s great, but they’re all going to like start doing our traditions, right? They’re going to like listen to our music and pray our prayers and wear our clothes and they’re going to like assimilate; they’re all going to become Jews, right?”And this was the hot-button question in the book of Acts: How Jewish do you have to be to follow Jesus? So the leaders get together and they pray and they pray and they’re like: God, what should we do? What should we do? They come back with this answer and they say: You know what? God has told us that all you have to do that’s Jewish is just don’t eat the meat from these pagan festivals, basically just don’t worship other Gods, and don’t be sexually immoral. Outside of that, keep your culture. Whatever culture you brought in here, just keep it. Men, you don’t have to be circumcised. And when they said that, every man in the house that day was worshiping God on his knees. It was the most expressive men have ever been in worship. It was just like, “Hallelujah! Praise the Lord 10 times! I don’t have to get circumcised!” It was amazing. And the reason I share all that with you is that you need to understand that the family of God was always meant to be multicultural. It was always meant to be different cultures and different backgrounds and different people all brought together underneath the one name of Jesus. It was never meant to be this like “assimilate into our thing and be just like us.” No, no. Whoever you are and whatever you walked in here with, whatever music you like to listen to, however you like to dress, whatever culture you come from, however you talk, however you walk, bring it in here. It’s okay. You’re welcome in the family of God because God’s plan from the get-go was always to bring different people together through Jesus. Now, there’s a reason for this. We can clap for that; that’s worthy. There’s a reason for this though, okay? And the reason is maybe not what you would think because the reason has nothing to do with political correctness. The reason has nothing to do with just checking off a box so that you fend off the cultural pressure to be diverse.There’s a pragmatic reason and then there’s a theological reason. We’ll get to the theological reason in a second, but there’s a pragmatic reason that God always wanted to bring different people together under Jesus, and it’s simply that we’re actually better together. Did you know that?We are actually better, not just in this room but in every room, when there are different kinds of people around. When it’s not a room full of same, we are actually better, and science has actually caught up with this. Science has actually already proven this. This is not an opinion; this is a scientific fact now. This is why I’m telling y’all. Side note: As Christians, we should never be scared of science. Science is our best friend. We should never be scared of science. Science is not going to disprove the existence of God. Science is the process of us understanding how God made it. That’s all this is. And science is going to catch up with a lot of this and science has caught up with this, with God’s heart.Look at the study that MIT did back in 2014. They studied diverse workplaces versus homogeneous or same workplaces. Here’s what they found. “The more homogeneous offices have higher levels of social capital…” Meaning they get along better. They enjoy being around each other. They have higher levels of social capital. “But the interesting twist is that…higher levels of social capital are not important enough to cause those offices to perform better. The employees might be happier, they might be more comfortable, and these might be cooperative places, but they seem to perform less well.”Forbes magazine released another study that was done back in 2017 where they found this. “Decisions made and executed by diverse teams delivered 60% better results.”We actually work better, like we do a better job at just about everything when different people come together. Come on, we’ve seen this in our lives. We know that we know the value of a different perspective. We know this is true that when we huddle up with same, when we huddle up with people who are just like us, same breeds bias.When you huddle up with people who are just like you—come on, you know this is true—you start to look at people who are slightly different than you and you start to view them a little bit negatively. You start to vilify them. You start to say that their differences are actually bad and not just differences. Same breeds bias.And oftentimes it’s unintentional. I actually just experienced this this past week when I was on vacation with my family. We were renting out a duplex in North Carolina, and the other half of the duplex was empty most of the week except for the last two days. The last two days, about 8 to 10 people moved into this other side of the duplex. Now these other 8 to 10 people, if you all saw them and you saw my family, you’d say y’all are probably family. I mean, my family is from the south and so we’re a bunch of hicks, and this family that moved into the duplex next to us, they were a bunch of hicks. You wouldn’t be able to tell us apart. There’s no way, but you would not believe how quickly I was able to find things that they were more hick than us. I’m like, “Do you hear that twang? Do you hear that twang over there? Do you see how many cans of Skoal they’ve got lined up over there?” I was finding ways that they were more hick than me! How sick is that? We’re all from Kentucky. We’re all from the south. We’re all a bunch of rednecks, and I’m like, “Well, I’m not as red as they are.” But this is just what we do. When we huddle up with people who are just like us and are the same, we find people that are not like us in any small way and we breed a bias against them. But now when you have different in your life, when you have different people around you and different people that you’re developing friendships with and different people that you’re working with and different people that you’re doing life with, different doesn’t breed bias; different breeds empathy. Different breeds an ability to care for someone and to feel what they feel, to at least see and somewhat understand what life is like in their shoes. And man, empathy is so important. I think if there’s one thing that could solve so many of our conflicts and so many of our world’s problems it would be empathy, just the ability to see like why do you think that and why do you feel that way and why do you say the things you say. But you can’t do that if you don’t have different people in your life, and I’m telling you, this keeps your faith fresh.Empathy gives you the ability to love people like Jesus loves them. Empathy gives you the ability to see people like God sees them. And this keeps our faith fresh. I’m seeing it firsthand in my life right now. I’ve been blessed to be a part of one of our groups here at Traders Point, and this group meets on Thursday mornings at 6:00 a.m. I know, that’s like an ungodly time, and it is, but it’s worth it. What I love the most about this group is how different it is. You can see, here’s a picture of them. I told them, I said, “Man, if you’re in a group with a preacher, just get ready; you’re going to be a sermon illustration at some point,” and it already happened. I made them take a picture with me.But it’s so different. It’s black. It’s white. It’s young. It’s old. It’s retired. It’s guys who are just getting out of college and getting into the workforce. It’s guys who have no kids. It’s guys who have young kids. It’s guys who have grown kids. It’s guys who are single, guys who just started dating relationships, guys who are newlyweds, guys who’ve been married for a long time. It’s just about every different perspective you could imagine in a group together, and let me tell you, it’s keeping our faith fresh.The kinds of conversations that are happening cross-generationally; the kinds of conversations where an older man who is retired is encouraging and speaking life into a man who just started his career and is helping him navigate the complexities of that. A guy who has young children is helping encourage a guy who has older children to remember the joy and the beauty of parenting. It’s happening all over the place. Different is making us better. We’re better together. It’s keeping our faith fresh.So, because this is how God created it to work from the get-go, because this was God’s plan, we must then, it’s incumbent upon us, to then pursue that plan, to find ourselves smackdab in the middle of God’s plan. And if you want to find yourself smackdab in the middle of God’s plan, you’ve got to pursue different. It’s not just going to happen by accident. It may; you may stumble into it by accident, but chances are you’re going to have to pursue it. You and I are going to have to figure out this thing in our heart that somehow, some way.Every time we see someone different than us, whether they’re a different age, a different skin color, a different aisle on the political spectrum, we see different and our hearts walk the other way. We walk away from different, but if we’re going to really pursue this and really be in the middle of God’s plan, we have to change our hearts and we have to start to pursue it. We’ve got to start diversifying our dinner tables. We’ve got to start diversifying our parties, diversifying our hangouts, seeing different and saying, “I’m not going to walk away, I’m going to walk toward it.” Because if we don’t, if we don’t, we risk letting our faith grow stale. Furthermore, what’s even scarier is not only will our faith grow stale personally, but we actually risk putting a lid on the effectiveness of our church, the effectiveness of the Gospel in this city. We’ve got to pursue different. Now, I know none of this is very like disagreeable yet. We may not be doing it perfectly and all of us probably need to grow in this, but nobody’s out there like, “Nah, man, I’m out. I hate people who are different than me. I’m walking away. You’re a sicko.” This is not very disagreeable stuff.Again, this is a cultural value right now. Think about our country right now. Thank goodness diversity is actually becoming a cultural value. Loving and pursuing people who are different than us is actually something that you don’t have to be a Christian to get around that. That’s something that our country is starting to get around. Even though we’re still very divided and still have a ton of work to do, it’s starting to rise to the top as a cultural value.The problem is when you actually start doing it. The problem is when you actually start bringing different people into your circles. It’s super hard, super challenging, very painful because different is uncomfortable. Different introduces tension. Different isn’t always agreeable. It’s hard, and again, this is not an opinion, this is fact. Science is proving it.If you go back to that MIT study that I referenced back in 2014, one of the other quotes from that study said this. It said, “That homogeneous teams”—same teams—"felt great during the process and yet they lost…” They were all comfortable. They felt good, but they lost. “…while diverse teams felt miserable during the process until they finished and met their target.”No one is telling us how hard it is, but you have to embrace that because the ultimate outcome will be better. It’s hard, and this was no shocker to Paul. When Paul wrote Ephesians 3, he knew how hard this was going to be. In fact, look at what he says in verse 14. He says, “When I think of all this…” Look what happens. What does he do? He jumps for joy and he can’t wait to do it? No, no, no. “When I think of all this,” bringing different people together in Jesus, “I fall to my knees and pray…” He’s like: I don’t know what to do because this sounds impossible to bring different people together through Jesus. The only thing I know to do is to pray. “I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth.”And Paul’s prayer, which is what we’re getting ready to read, is the key. Paul’s prayer is the how. If you want to understand how to love people who are different than you and how we can become a church that seeks out different and doesn’t walk away from different but walks toward different, his prayer is the key.So let’s jump into it, verse 16. He says this. “I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit.” You’re going to need to be strong. “Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him.” You’re going to have to obey him and trust him so much that Jesus just feels comfortable inside you. You’re not doing anything to grieve him, but we’ve got to trust him. And then “Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.” Because it’s going to be tough and you’re going to get knocked over and you’ve got to have deep roots. But then he gets to the crux of it right here. He says, “And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is.” And may you not just understand but “May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.”He says if you want to love people who are different than you, here’s what you have to do. You have to understand with your mind the immeasurable, immense love of Jesus. But you don’t just understand it with your mind, you’ve got to experience it for yourself. You’ve got to experience it in your heart, and when you understand the love of God and you experience it in your heart, it will give you everything you need to love people who are different than you, because Jesus could not be more different than us. You understand that, right? There is no one who is more different from us than Jesus. We couldn’t be farther apart. While he is all-powerful, we are weak and insufficient. While he is all-knowing, we are very limited in our knowledge of the universe and limited in our knowledge of how things work.See, while he’s all-seeing, we can only see things from our perspective. While we are unable to live up to the standard of perfection that God requires, Jesus was perfectly able to live a perfect and sinless life.See, while we were stuck without a solution for the one thing that plagues us all, physical death, Jesus was able to, in and of himself, provide a solution and conquer death once and for all simply by the power within his own Spirit. There is no comparison. We are nothing like Jesus. He is wholly other. He is wholly set apart. He is worthy. He’s holy. He’s mighty. He’s loving. He’s caring. He’s everything we’ve ever strived to be and more. He couldn’t be more different than us. He’s entirely different. And yet… He’s entirely different and yet he loves us. He didn’t walk away from us; he walked toward us. He didn’t stay away from different; he got up right next to different. He said: Let me bring you in.See, this is why you have to understand in your mind and experience in your hearts the love of Jesus. Because Jesus loved us and we are different, so if you want to love people who are different, you’ve got to love like Jesus loves. You’ve got to experience that. You can’t offer something to someone that you haven’t experienced and received yourself. That’s really the reason—you know, we talked about a pragmatic reason that God has a heart for diversity and different—there’s a theological reason. And it’s not about being politically correct. It’s not about checking a box. It’s because when we love people who are different than us, it puts the love of God on display for the world to see. It communicates the Gospel to a world that isn’t quite sure what it is. It communicates God’s love to a world that is dying without it. When you love someone who’s different than you, you are putting his Gospel on display for the world to see. Jesus would say it like this in John chapter 13. He’d say, “So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you…” Like just as I have loved you, you were different and I came near to you, you were different, you were nothing like me, but I loved you with everything I’ve got. “Just as I have loved you, you should love each other.” And then, “Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” It will prove to the world. You see, Paul knew, Jesus knew there’s so much more on the line than just being politically correct. There is a world that is dying out there that needs to see the love of God, and if you and I can start to embrace this and start to love people who are different than us and the world can see that, man that is such a dangerous love. It has the power to change the world.That’s why Paul would end Ephesians 3 with these last two verses and then we’ll wrap up. These last two verses say this. “Now all glory to God, who is able…” If you’re wondering if you can do this, you can because he’s able. “…through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish…” I love these two words. “…infinitely more…” One translation says far more. “…infinitely more than we” could ever “ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen.” It’s like Paul’s saying: You know what? If you’ll love different, Jesus can give you the love to do it, and if you’ll do it, he’ll actually accomplish infinitely more, far more, than you could ever ask for or think. He’ll change the world through it.But it starts with us individually experiencing in our hearts and knowing with our minds how incredible and immense and immeasurable the love of Jesus is, and so let’s do that today. I want you to stand to your feet at all of our campuses. We’re going to worship, but we’re going to pray into this time of worship and we’re going to pray the same thing that Paul prayed for us 2,000 years ago when he wrote this. We’re just going to pray what we just read right back to God.So go ahead and bow your heads, close your eyes, and let’s pray this.Jesus, we pray right now that from your glorious and unlimited resources that you will empower us with inner strength through your Spirit. God, we need your strength. We can’t do this on our own. We are not capable of this. We need you. And then Jesus, we pray that you would make your home in our hearts as we trust you, that God, our lives and our obedience would be so committed and so strong to you that you’re just relaxed in our hearts, that you’re kicking back and you’re enjoying life inside of our hearts, that nothing’s grieving you about our lives.And God, we ask that you would grow our roots deep down into your love to keep us strong. God, when we get knocked over, when we offend someone, when we don’t love different the way that we ought to, we’re going to need roots deep down into your love to keep us strong.And God, may we have the power to understand, as all of your people should, just how wide, just how long, just how high, and how deep your love is for us. Help us to know it in our minds, to be reminded of it when we forget throughout the week. And God, not just know it in our minds, but God, may we experience the love of Jesus. Right now in these moments and every day when we wake up, God, help us to experience it, to feel it in our hearts, to not just know it in our minds, but to feel your love, though we know it’s too great to understand fully. We just know that when we focus on your love, Jesus, that you’re going to make us complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from you. And God, we give you all the glory for this. We don’t want to become a multiethnic, diverse movement of God so that we can pat ourselves on the back. We want to love different, all kinds of different, as a way to express our gratitude to you, to give you the glory of what you can do in our hearts, and we know you’re able through the mighty power at work within us through your Holy Spirit to take that and accomplish infinitely more, far more, than anything we could ever ask for or think of.We love you, Jesus. We give you all the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever, and the church prays together. Amen.
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