Sunday, November 29, 2015

Get Excited

Get Excited
November 30, 2015
Ephesians 1:18  "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."

Paul writes his famous letter to the church in Ephesus, which is known as the book of Ephesians.  He opens the first chapter with such excitement about the Lord's grace and love and the future inheritance found in Heaven.  If you read the first chapter as one opening paragraph, you'll see that Paul's sentences are short and overflowing with words like peace, joy, purpose, unity, destiny, riches.  I can find few places in the Bible written with so much enthusiasm and genuine excitement.  Paul was excited, but for what?  Paul tries to communicate what he was excited about, the blessings in Heaven which will eventually be made known to each of us.  He realizes we will have to wait for some of them and understands we will not grasp the reason for his excitement to the same depth he was experiencing it, as he penned the words.  He even has to write, "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."

Paul knew we wouldn't get it.  He understood it is beyond comprehension, the future and plan the Lord has for us, and tried to communicate that we probably wouldn't get it.  It is something that cannot be explained, but must be revealed in our hearts  by the Lord.  The Lord had revealed it to Paul's heart with such deep conviction that Paul was able to stay excited the rest of his days on the earth.  It kept him going.  Paul knew we needed that same excitement and knew there were not words to explain the reason for his continued enthusiasm.  Paul prayed the Lord would reveal it to us in the same way it was revealed to him.  He tried to raise the excitement of the Ephesians and some of them were able to generate a degree of enthusiasm for what the Lord was and is doing.  He suggested maintaining the same excitement would be required to carry them through the rest of their lives, and if they couldn't maintain motivation through enthusiasm they might fall away from the Lord.

It was rather prophetic, in fact.  If you read the book of Revelation, you'll find that the church in Ephesus was described as having lost their first love.  They failed to fully grasp the momentum and love for the Lord, and maintain it.  They traded the future glory and riches for something only slightly shinny on the earth, which faded away.  You and I have the tendency to be like the Ephesians.  We grasp a little bit of the excitement, but never fully let it set in to stay motivated like Paul.  We lose our excitement, forgetting our first love, when the world distracts us with flashy lights.  The flashy lights have no real substance and in the end leave us hollow and unfulfilled, and for many, lead to an eternity in hell.

Paul was trying to rally for motivation, knowing we needed to get excited about all the Lord has in store.  He knew the bigger and more genuine our enthusiasm for the work of the Lord, the more likely we would make it to the end of the race on this earth successfully.  But he also knew that he could only introduce us to the excitement, that the Lord would have to convince us individually so we would have the same internal conviction that Paul possessed.  I want you to be excited about the Lord; I want to continually be excited myself.  We both must pray like Paul prayed, that the Lord would open the eyes of our hearts to be enlightened of the future hope and glory.  It's time to get excited, Christian.

Don't take my word for it; look it up: Ephesians 1, Rev 2:1-7

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