The day after tomorrow I will sign my covenant for officership in The Salvation Army. Last week I had the opportunity to take part in several consecration chapels to prepare myself spiritually in light of the commitment I am making in service before the Lord.
During one of those chapels I was given a notecard that I last held in my hand on the first Sunday I spent here as a cadet at Evangeline Booth College. On it I wrote my hopes for my training experience over these two years. In 2010 I penned these words:
Two years later and those same feelings often tug at my heart. Emptiness. Not a sad or hopeless emptiness, but an emptiness that comes from the day to day dealings of life. A reminder that I am made of dust. I realize, though, that through this ministry of the empty vessel - the Lord has indeed shown me what it is to be made perfect in love.
The Apostle Paul wrote what scholars call a 'Prayer for Spiritual Strength' in Ephesians 3:14-21.
For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
Have faith. Know love. (Be rooted and grounded in it - made perfect in it.) And you'll be filled with all the fullness of God.
The filling of an empty vessel - the fulfilling of my hopes.