We find in this passage three things that Paul prays the Ephesians church will come to know: the hope of God’s calling, the riches of God’s inheritance, and God’s power. Spirit empowered knowledge of these would enable them to live the Christian life. As a father, these are things I want for my children. The eyes of their hearts opened to these realities will further them in the growth in Christ.
First, the hope of God’s calling.
What are some things my children might look to in order to find hope in this world? Money, fashion, friends, amusement, music, career…
When Paul speaks of the hope of God’s calling, he means that it is the certainty of increasing blessing and joy in Christ, beginning now and lasting through eternity. Romans 15:13 “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”
This hope doesn’t come overnight, but just as Paul learned to be content (Philippians 4), so my children can learn to trust and find comfort in this hope of God’s calling. The Holy Spirit will reveal it to them more and more as they center their lives in the Word. My saved children He has called from slavery to freedom, from darkness to light, from death to life, from mortality to immortality, from defeat to victory; this is their hope. The hope of His calling includes everything related to salvation; regeneration, reconciliation, justification, adoption, propitiation, expiation and glorification, as well as acceptance, forgiveness, redemption. This hope should give believers motivation to fight the battles of life, to wrestle not against flesh and blood but against spiritual powers.
Recently, I finished reading The Magician’s Nephew to my boys this. This is the beginning of the Chronicles of Narnia series by C.S. Lewis. Let me read a paragraph:
“Both the children were looking up into the Lion’s face as he spoke these words. And all at once (they never knew exactly how it happened) the face seemed to be a sea of tossing gold in which they were floating, and such a sweetness and power rolled about them and over them and entered into them that they felt they had never really been happy or wise or good, or even alive and awake, before. And the memory of that moment stayed with them always, so that as long as they both lived, if ever they were sad or afraid or angry, the thought of all that golden goodness, and the feeling that it was still there, quite close, just round some corner or just behind some door, would come back and make them sure, deep down inside, that all was well.”
Isn’t this what knowing Christ is like for the Christian. If ever we are sad or afraid or angry, the intimate knowledge of His glorious goodness will assure us that all is well. I want my children to have this knowledge, this hope, this assurance that because of God’s calling on their lives all will be well no matter what the circumstance.
My prayer for my children:
Lord, my first and most urgent prayer is for the salvation of my children. Lord, I pray that their names will be found written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. Use my Lord as a powerful proclaimer of your truth and let that truth find fertile soil in their young hearts. Plant your truth deep let it grow and bear fruit in their lives. Father, send your spirit to my those children of mine whom you have saved. Open the eyes of their hearts to know the hope of your calling. Enlighten them to see what they otherwise cannot see. Let this knowledge be precious to them and may it empower them to live worthy of your calling. In Jesus name, amen.