“For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”
Ephesians 3:14-19 ESV
This month marks the beginning of my 14th year, serving as pastor at the Mt. Pleasant Church of the Brethren. As I recently read through the passage above, I thought about how this passage still articulates my desire for those whom I have the privilege of serving. I desire most of all for them that Christ would dwell in their hearts through faith, and that being rooted and grounded in love, that they would be able to grasp more and more of the knowledge of the love of Christ, a love that beyond us understanding completely, but is no less true, and that each one would be filled with all the fullness of God.
What greater thing could a pastor want for the congregation he serves? Not only is this passage indicative of what I hope for the congregation, but what I attempt to develop in the congregation. All the messages, all the one on one conversations, all the Bible Studies, fellowship events and work projects, are geared at helping the congregation come to the place of being rooted and grounded in the Word of God that teaches us about the love of God, the love that he wants us to have for one another.
It’s been my joy to see this happen in individuals along the way; to see them grow in their faith, to see their faith mature, and hold them up through the difficulties that life brings our way. It’s been my joy to see their faith lived out in their lives, to hear their faith expressed in the various settings we experience in the life of a church.
It’s my hope, for as long as the Lord allows me to continue to serve this congregation that we can continue down this road of comprehending “the breadth and length and height and depth” of the love of God and that they will become more and more “filled with all the fullness of God”. The journey isn’t always easy and smooth, but it’s in those times of uphill climbs that we learn a great deal more about our Lord, and about ourselves and our dependence upon Him. May God bless the years that remain.
By His Grace Alone,
Pastor Bruce Jacobsen