Ephesians 3:16-19 says, "I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through the Holy Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and grounded 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."
One of my daughters recently came to me with a heavy heart telling me about a friend of hers that was having a very tough time in her marriage. Another daughter told me of a friend whose child had been hurt. Family heart ache, loss and struggles are all around us and sometimes it can get overwhelming-as in the case of my daughter who feels so deeply for others. She asked me how to go about her 'normal' life with the knowledge of her friends struggles. That is a question that we all must face, especially when we are in the business of ministering to others. Over the years I have taken that question to God many times. Here is what I think He has told me..."LET GO".
When someone comes to us with their pain and suffering we are called to listen and to be there for them, and to pray for them. All good things. But the struggle comes when we try to hold onto their pain as if our holding it close to us is somehow releaving them of their pain. I think, when we allow other people challenges to paralize us it can make us ineffective in God's kingdom. What if, instead, we were to pray the prayer in Ephesians, trust God to take care of them and then release ourselves from playing God and trying to 'fix' everything? I'm not saying that we shouldn't be there for them and do everything within our power to help-we absolutely should. What I am saying is that I cannot strenthen them, I cannot give them power or fill them with the Holy Spirit-only God can. What I can do is pray and encourage and love them, then let go. God is so good at being God and I make a pretty lousy one.
I pray the prayer of Ephesians for you this Holiday season-That you will know the love that surpasses all understanding.
Merry Christmas Friend!