Articles

A Big Infilling

 

‘Be filled with all the fullness of God!’

(Ephesians 3:19)

These words, standing at the top of the website, are among the most arresting ever written.

Who would ever imagine such a thing?

And who would dare to put it in writing?

To be filled with all the fullness of a God who is infinitely full, isn’t that a bit over the top? And isn’t it arrogating to ourselves what ought to be uniquely God’s – his own fullness? And isn’t trying to be like God sin?

Absolutely not, says the apostle Paul, writing under divine inspiration. Not in this case. It is the very purpose of God to fill his children with all his fullness. The only question is whether his children realize it.

Paul thinks they don’t. He is concerned that too few Christians understand the magnificence of the life God has given to them. ‘I bow my knees before the Father . . . and pray . . . that you might have strength to comprehend just how full your life is’ (Ephesians 3:14, 18).

Interestingly, we rarely celebrate our lives. Instead, we merely tolerate life. We roll with life in the good times and struggle with life in the bad. And very few of us, indeed very few Christians, celebrate life for all it’s worth, because, evidently, we don’t think it’s worth all that much.

There are reasons for this.

Part of our indifference to life is a result of secularists who argue that life is an accident, the product of random mutations over time. Since life is simply a cosmic mistake, it has no inherent meaning. And if it has no meaning, we must create our own meaning. And what we’ve created – the pursuit of our own desires – does little to fill our souls.

Responding to the secularists, religious people claim that life is experienced to the full only in the eternal hereafter. Right now we are just biding our time, awaiting the giant uptick of heaven.

Hence neither the secularists nor the religious have much encouraging to say about life in the present. That’s why few celebrate life now.

But Paul says we’re mistaken. We’re missing out on the biggest of God’s gifts. He has given us all his fullness. Through the gift of the indwelling Christ, who is himself all the fullness of deity in bodily form, God has filled us with his very own fullness.

So our lives can be infinitely full today.

Do we realize how full we are in Jesus Christ?

Paul prays we would: that we’d have the strength to comprehend the fullness of Christ within us right now.

When we do, it changes everything. To know you are filled with a well-spring of eternal refreshment changes the way you view life, changes the way you live life.

How?

That’s what I want to figure out. I want to understand better and better what it means to live in Christ today.

My most recent book, No Ordinary Marriage, is an attempt to do that within marriage, to apply the fullness of Christ to the union of husbands and wives. I believe that our marriages, when husbands and wives understand they are infused with the limitless resources of the indwelling Christ, can soar to unimaginable heights and become showcases of the glory of God itself.

What joy!

Please, for God’s glory and for your good, discover for yourself just how much of the life of God you already possess by virtue of Christ indwelling you – and let it change who you are and how you live.

One response to “A Big Infilling

When the six women of the GIFT ministry planning team met for time away recently, this was a theme in our conversation and devotional times.You write that “To know you are filled . . . changes the way you view life . . . and the way you live life.” Yes! Surely, the tasting must come first; “taste and see that the LORD is good.” (Ps. 34:8) Once we get that taste, the hunger and thirst for Him continues to deepen. How sad for our souls, when we let the satisfying of that hunger and thirst – the filling of which you write – be trumped by the daily to-do’s. How weak, for effective ministry. We each have the daily choice about whether we will seek Him. Once you experience the richness God offers, “too busy” weakens its hold on your mind. A daily seeking, truly, is part of celebrating life now!

Sharon Moore August 20, 2012

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