“To him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen.” Eph. 3:20-21

Heavenly Father, meditating on Paul’s prayers in the Book of Ephesians (Eph. 1:15-22; 3:14-21) fills my heart with encouragement, joy, and hope. The gates of hell will not derail the growth of your church, advancing of your kingdom, and arrival of the new heaven and new earth (Rev. 21:1-22:6).

We’re not naïve. Until the Day of all-things-new, Satan will continue his attacking, lying, and robbing. Really good churches, (and really mature believers), do drift, fall, and jump into really big messes. Confident of your promise to do “immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine,” here’s what we ask and imagine.

Restore us to our first-love relationship with Jesus (Eph. 6:24; Rev. 2:1-7). In response to his incomparable love for us (Eph. 3:18-19), may we love Jesus more than we ever have—more than our sin, more than our most beloved family members, more than our next breath (Luke 14:26).

Humble, gentle, and gladden us. Dead bones can live again (Ezekiel 37). Chilly-hearted, cynical believers can dance again (Luke 15). Christians who have deeply hurt each other can heal and love well again. Churches can get unstuck, and become upward gazing and outward facing again.

Father, bring us into fresh, palpable, ongoing Gospel-renewal. We ask, imagine, and crave it, in Jesus’ holy and loving name. So Very Amen.