|“I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established 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.” (Ephesians 3:16-19)
India is a land of gods and goddesses. She has given five major religions to the world. There are hundreds of voluminous ancient scripture. There are many saints, hermits, and religious teachers. These religious pious know how to control their body, mind, and emotion by transcendental meditation and yoga. In general, most Indians are familiar with the temple worship, sacrifice, and charity. The question therefore arises, “What makes Christianity unique for the land of India?”
The answer to the question is the “love of God.” All human beings need love more than the articulation of words and apologetics. They need to experience the width, the length, the depth and the height of the love of our Lord Jesus Christ through Christians, but how would they receive if Christians themselves have failed to grasp these dimensions of the love of God?
The subtle shift of emphasis in our Christendom has undermined the practice and experience of love that Jesus emphasized in the two Great Commandments. The “love-feast” has replaced the ceremony of “Eucharist.” The practice of love is the means to an agenda that are aimed towards an institutional achievement. The Church is more passionate about the programs rather than the person who need to experience the love of God. We can hear Paul speaking to us, “If I speak in tongues of men and angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I posses to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, I gain nothing.” (1 Cor 13:1-3)
I must confess that I have found myself often loving only those who are lovable and those who will love me in return. There are times I have loved my sermons more than my listeners are. I have loved evangelism more than those who I have led to Christ. I have loved my Church and my ministry more than I have loved the people whom I was ministering. I did not realize that my pre-occupation in God’s work had distanced me from the life situations of those for whom God has called me. I stand guilty for failing to love people the way Jesus loved sinners, prostitutes, lepers, and the underprivileged of the society.
Indeed, I desperately need to be rooted and established in His love and take hold of the wide, long, high and deep love of Jesus Christ in order that I may have the fullness of God’s love flowing through me for others. How about you? Surely, God led Paul to make this prayer in Eph 3:16-19 for all of us. May the Lord God empower us with the fullness of His Love. Amen.