A Benediction for 2018 and a Blessing for 2019

Ephesians 3:20-21

On this last day of 2018, it seems appropriate to give thanks to God for the blessings and benefits of 2018 while at the same time ask His blessing and favor upon the coming year.

We are blessed to have not only teaching on the subject of prayer to read in our Bibles but to have actual examples of prayer. One of these prayers is Ephesians 3:20-21.

Now to him who is able to do above and beyond all that we ask or think according to the power that works in us— 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

This prayer demands that God gets all praise.

“Now to him”

Rightly, this prayer of doxology begins, “Now to Him.” As we reflect a moment on the joys and blessings of 2018, let’s make sure we praise His name. As we look to 2019, let’s depend upon Him for all things and then give Him praise for all things.

This prayer directs how we ought to pray.

“who is able to do above and beyond all that we ask or think ”

We should pray according to God’s ability and our inability even to comprehend what God can do and will do. Praying this prayer with this attitude requires faith.

G. Campbell Morgan, a preacher of another generation, was asked by someone, “Do you think that we ought to ask God about the little things? Or should we just ask Him about the big things?”

He answered, “Can you think of anything that you ask that is big for God?”

This prayer defines by what power these things get done.

“according to the power that works in us”

The power described here goes back to the prayer for power in Ephesians 1. What is Paul’s reference point for God’s power? The resurrection!

As this year closes and a new one begins, I pose two questions.

  1. What are you thanking God for as this year closes?
  2. What are you believing God for as a new year begins?

Just remember, as you pray, He is able to do above and beyond all that we ask or think!