This past weekend I attended the National Presbyterian Women’s Gathering. I will admit up front that I was dreading it. I was dreading the boring speakers, unhelpful forums and mind-numbing workshops. I wasn’t looking forward to the bland hotel food and sleepless nights either. And I will be the first to admit I was WRONG on all accounts, wrong, wrong, wrong!
The keynote speakers, workshops and forums were amazing. Each speaker/leader brought her own perspective on what it means not only to be rooted in God’s love, the theme for the weekend, but what it means to be a faithful woman in our contemporary and often dark world. We were challenged, enlightened and inspired. The women who attended were warm, encouraging and loving. It was brilliant. Even the food was good, and I managed to sleep well after long days.
During the gathering, I was given the honour to preach at one of the worship services. What an exhilarating experience to share the word of God with over 500 women. I had the privilege of reminding us all of the prayer prayed by Paul to the church in Ephesus, a prayer as powerful today as it was then. A reminder as important today as it was then. Paul wrote:
And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, 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: 17-19)
This world we live in can chew us up and spit us out. HOWEVER, when we remember who God is — that God doesn't love us because of what we do but rather God loves us because of who God is — it changes everything.
Love is just not what God does. Love is who God is.
When we remember that there is nothing we can do to get God to love us more and there is nothing we can do to cause God to love us less, it changes us. It changes who we are. It changes how we see the world. It changes how we pray! Then, together with Paul, we can pray with confidence,
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (Ephesians 3:20-21)
This Sunday we will conclude our four-part series entitled Things God Never Said. This week we are looking at the very common belief that God said, “It doesn’t matter what you believe as long as you are sincere.” Did God say that? Please join me this Sunday.
If you know someone who is questioning their faith, or they may not even be sure what they believe, this would be the perfect week to bring them.
I look forward to worshipping with you all on Sunday!