Each week of this Sisters Stories series kicks off with a new chapter from Priscilla Shirer’s God is Able – a book that makes every word of my life verse a morsel to be savored.
I love this week’s look at Transcendence. Or this little segment of Ephesians 3:20:
Now to Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.
Exceeding. Abundantly. Beyond.
It wasn’t enough for Paul to say that God could go beyond what we could imagine. He had to throw some really big descriptive words before the “beyond” so that we would appreciate HOW FAR beyond our wildest dreams God will go. As Priscilla puts it, God’s “working out a miracle that transcends the farthest reaches of our imagination.”
Sometimes our English translations can’t even adequately capture what the writer intended in the original language. Here, Paul used the same prefix TWICE: Hyper. Hyper. Priscilla writes it’s like saying that God doesn’t just go way past our imagination but way past way past! And then she shares this:
And so I’m just wondering: When you think about the kind of miracle it would take to completely revolutionize your circumstances, to cleanse your conscience, to repair your relationships, to brighten your outlook, to dig you out of this hole you’re in, what is the most amazing, mind-blowing, stupefying solution you can picture? What would be way past, way beyond your wildest hope?
He can do that. God can.
Did you get goose bumps drawing that mental picture? Then not even being able to wrap your mind around what could be BETTER than your best case? Oh, but it can be.
I love that this passage fell during Thanksgiving. When we look around and are thankful for the big and small things God has given (or withheld). What if we spent this week of thankfulness thinking about exceeding abundantly beyond? That’s the God we serve.
This week, I will be sharing some posts about thankfulness. Our next sister story will come the week after Thanksgiving because it is such a powerful testimony of a God that does move WAY beyond what we can imagine that I’d hate for it to get lost in this week when so many of us are spending time with family and reflecting on what God is going in our own lives. I’ll also have a special “giving back” edition of a Fashion Fridays this week – Black Friday deals you can feel good about.
In the meantime, if you go to pray, maybe instead of asking God for something specific, you can say, “God, would you solve this problem way beyond anything that I could come up with?” Trust Him to do it. He’s a big God.