Our memory verse this week:
7 I will give them a heart to know me, that I am the Lord. They will be my people, and I will be their God, for they will return to me with all their heart. ~Jeremiah 24:7
Today’s SOAP takes us into Ephesians. This is part of Paul’s prayer for the people of the church of Ephesians. It’s a prayer of thanksgiving, and verses 17-19 fall in the middle of this prayer. For context, I’ve included the entire prayer.
Thanksgiving and Prayer
15 For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, 16 I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. 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. 18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way. (NIV)
Through the prayer of Paul, it is his hope that we are given the spirit of wisdom and revelation so that we may come to know the Lord better! And isn’t this still our hope today? That through our prayer we come to know the Lord better? And that we can see and understand His plan for us? Paul also prays that the eyes of our hearts may be enlightened so that we can see the calling when it comes, and see all the blessings that God truly wants us to have, and that we find power in the belief of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
I think Paul’s actions are best application to put to use. Prayer. The beauty in this prayer is how it openly asks for what is needed in order to enjoy all the blessings God wishes to put before us. We need to talk to God daily…even if we don’t know what to say, we must remember that the Holy Spirit will intercede for us. So we should never not talk to God out of fear. His love for us is greater than anything we will ever know.
Dear God, my prayer to You may not always be what I think it should be, but help me to realize that all You want is the effort of prayer, and not to continue holding on to the fear that my prayer to You isn’t good enough. It’s so easy for me to get into that trap, but ever so hard to free myself. May the prayer of Paul to the Ephesians also be my prayer so that my eyes and heart are open and willing to except Your calling. In Jesus Name, Amen.