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Friends in Christ Weekly Message
May 7, 2005

     But I do more than thank. I ask - ask the God of our Master, Jesus Christ, the God of glory - to make you intelligent and discerning in knowing him personally, your eyes focused and clear, so that you can see exactly what it is he is calling you to do, grasp the immensity of this glorious way of life he has for Christians,

     He is in charge of it all, has the final word on everything. At the center of all this, Christ rules the church. The church, you see, is not peripheral to the world; the world is peripheral to the church. The church is Christ's body, in which he speaks and acts, by which he fills everything with his presence.

Ephesians 1:17-18, 22-23 (Message*)

Often we do not see clearly what God has in mind for us as followers of Christ. Paul asks God to make the Christians at Ephesus, and by extension all believers, intelligent and discerning in knowing Christ personally. He asks that our spiritual eyes be focused and clear so that we may see how God is calling us and grasp the glory of the life He has for us.

It is not just about going to worship regularly and doing "religious" things. It is about letting ourselves be transformed by Christ so that we are doing His work on earth day by day, and living in His glory.

And this is far more than an individual call. The church - the whole body of believers, not a particular institution - is now Christ's body, the way He acts and speaks throughout the world. We need to be united with our brothers and sisters in Christ in being Christ to the world.

Dear friends, Paul is giving us much to deeply consider in prayer in these short passages. Are we intelligent and discerning in knowing Christ personally? Are our spiritual eyes focused and clear, so we understand exactly how Christ is calling us? Are we acting in unity with our fellow believers in being Christ's voice and hands in the world?

Bill Samuel

* The Message version ©2002 by Eugene H. Peterson.

©2005 Friends in Christ, Inc.

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Document last modified on Saturday, 14-May-2005 15:54:58 EDT