“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 saints, 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.” Ephesians 3.16-19
The other morning I had to run some errands, and because bad weather was blowing in, I opted to go to the mall first. I confess: I hate malls. I know it’s not normal, but it’s true. The only reason I ever go to a mall is because I cannot find what I want to buy someplace else. So, with rain on the horizon, I headed to the mall, where I had to park, then walk a half-mile to the store with the product I wanted. When I got inside the mall, I realized none of the stores were open yet, strong supporting evidence for the infrequency of my mall forays, also explaining why I got a parking space in the same county. As a result, I had no choice but to spend $6 on a cup of coffee I didn’t want to go with a cookie I didn’t need. While sitting there munching on my cookie and wondering if it was South Beach-friendly – or rather, wondering just how unfriendly it was – I looked around at all the stores preparing to open.
Everything imaginable could be purchased in that one large expanse of stores. Side by side, door after door opened into a veritable wonderland of merchandise. And just in case every conceivable desire could not be fulfilled in the huge array of shops, small kiosks had been crammed into the broad hallways. From trinkets to the finest jewelry, gumballs to widescreen TVs and everything in between, anything a person could possibly want was available for purchase. What struck me as odd as I looked around was that every store was barred shut. There weren’t mere doors at the entryways; there were impenetrable steel bars. We want stuff so badly that the stuff must be protected from us.
How much would we have to buy to satisfy the human heart? How many things must we purchase to fill a hungry soul? Looking around at the enormous variety of items, the thought occurred to me that the human heart and soul possess a near insatiable appetite. Whetted and unsatisfied, the human being will crave and consume as much as possible, always hungering and yearning for more. One has only to walk through a mall to confirm this reality.
Blaise Pascal observed that ‘the infinite abyss of the human soul is in search of an Infinite Object, that is, God Himself.’ Our souls are yearning, hungry and searching as we continually fill them with everything, while satisfying nothing. There is a perpetual cry from the depth of our beings that goes unanswered until we cry out to Christ. The tragedy is that so many of us seek to gratify our souls in every conceivable way, when the glorious riches of Christ and His love are waiting to be poured out into our lives, filling us to the measure of the fullness of God. We look everywhere, try everything, and still search for more, when the deepest longing of the human heart and soul are ours, simply for the asking.
A favorite hymn of mine includes these words: O the deep, deep love of Jesus, vast, unmeasured, boundless, free! Rolling as a mighty ocean in its fullness over me! Underneath me, all around me, is the current of His love…
As a child, I often ‘rode the waves’ in the ocean when vacationing at the beach. Perhaps that experience influences the wonder, delight, joy and laughter of being caught in the current of Jesus’ love – tossed, carried, pulled and buoyed by the boundless freedom of His immeasurable love. This unfailing and inescapable love is the security and satisfaction for which our hearts and souls yearn. Some days, life is good – other days, not so good. But the peace of our souls and the richness of our lives are not dependent upon events or circumstances. Instead, in every situation we find ourselves riding the current of God’s vast love.
Take a moment of quiet each day and pray Paul’s prayer in the passage above. Come to know this love that surpasses all knowledge, and let the fullness of God satisfy the yearning of your heart and soul.
In Christ –
Ó 2007 Servants’ Feast Ministry