Big Prayers

Read: Ephesians 3:14-21

. . . far more abundantly . . . (v. 20)

When I read Paul’s grand prayer that closes Ephesians 3, my own prayers feel small and practical. Of course our heavenly Father is eager to hear our prayers for “daily bread” (Matt. 6:11). But these verses provide a grand finale to the familiar ending of the Lord’s Prayer, “For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever.” There is so much more God has in store for us. God is able (and ready) to do “far more abundantly than all that we ask or think” (v. 20).

This suggests that when we are through praying, God thinks in reply, “Is that all you want me to do? Nothing more?” Dr. Bill Brownson, a former president of Words of Hope, has taught me much about prayer. As he turned 90 years old, he shared his love for this passage with me: “Jon, I’m through with small prayers. I am praying big ones.” His prayer that day? That God would bring about one more vast worldwide revival in his lifetime.

C. S. Lewis once described our tendency to underestimate God’s greatness: “It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures . . . like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea” (The Weight of Glory). Consider Ephesians 3 as an invitation to pray the big prayers for God’s glory to be known. —Jon Opgenorth

As you pray, ask God to show you more of his glory.