Shifting Gears

| 24 January 2020

"I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and domin- ion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come." (Ephesians 1:18-21)

The first time someone rides a bike with multiple gears can be a pretty harrowing experience. A few years ago, my brother and I went mountain biking in a beautiful park just outside Seattle, WA. He was visiting for the week and it had been years since I had ridden a bike. We were riding and in the first short uphill section it felt like I was losing control of the bike. I was spinning the pedals and it didn’t feel like I was going anywhere! It was because I really wasn’t! I was pedaling as hard and as fast as I could and getting nowhere fast. Moments later, after catching up with my brother, he gently reminded me that I had to shift gears if I wanted to get power. Apparently, after some time away it was not “just like riding a bike.” After this revelation, my pedaling experience got much better. I wish I could say the same about using disc brakes. (I only went over the handlebars 3 times that day; thankfully, Washington moss is soft.)

What am I getting at here? Well, do you ever feel like you’re spinning your pedals in your walk with the Lord? We read over and over that the power that raised Christ from the dead is the same great power and blessing that’s bestowed upon us who believe, but sometimes we can’t “harness” that power until we shift gears a little. As I learned that day, the power and the gears to move were there the whole time, but my ability to harness the power was not.

Paul’s prayer is that the eyes of our hearts may be enlightened to live fully in that hope and power that God has. Clearly, the gears don’t change—the power is always there—but sometimes we don’t live in the power of resurrection. Paul prays we’d experience it. Did you know that God has power over sin and death? May our hearts be enlightened to that power for us who believe.

May our prayer be God will enlighten our hearts to take hold of the enormous power that God has made available to us so that we might live in freedom. Maybe it’s time for us to shift gears a little because the power is there!

Seth Redden
High School Pastor