Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.
— Ephesians 3:20 (NKJV)
We don’t use God. God uses us. We don’t use His power. God wants to live through us. And He cannot live through us if we are not surrendered to Him and to the authority of His Word. It is in our surrender to God’s Word and to His truth that we receive His power to live the new life Jesus has given us. We draw upon His power in our identifying with Jesus in the truth of our salvation.
When we serve out of our identity in Christ, the Holy Spirit empowers us. Our joy is complete. If we serve God out of a sense of obligation, serving Him becomes a duty instead of a privilege. When we serve God out of the love He has poured into our lives, we serve Him freely without reservation. We trust that in our weakness the Holy Spirit is strong. Serving Him becomes our greatest pleasure. His power is free to flow. He does abundantly more than we ask or think through us.
Jesus Christ has given us an exchanged life. He exchanged our sins for His righteousness. We are new in Him. The old is gone. In our born-again spirit, we have received His righteousness. When we surrender our will, reasoning, and understanding to the Holy Spirit and allow Him to guide and empower us, Christ lives through us. We serve Him out of His power at work within us. Serving Him flows out of faith instead of obligation. Serving Him is a joy because nothing rests on us. Everything rests on Hm.
Yes, God does abundantly more than we ask or think, but we can never forget the last phrase in this verse: “according to the power that works in us.” He does abundantly more through us when we surrender to His work of righteousness in us. God doesn’t want us burned out from obligation. He wants us fulfilled in the power of His Spirit.
We choose to surrender to God, but it is not our work. It is the work of the Holy Spirit in us. We must give Him access to work in us. When we submit to God, we deny the flesh access. But it is God’s power in us that accomplishes what we have denied. It is His power that accomplishes His truth. Surrendering allows the fruit of the Spirit—love, joy, peace, kindness, patience, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control—to flow through our lives.
Our surrender to God is not a pick-and-choose surrender. It is a total denying of what we sense. It is a denying of our feelings and continually receiving by faith the truth of our salvation.
Spiritual hunger nourishes deeper faith. There is always something more the Holy Spirit wishes to reveal in our hearts. The search for God’s truth begins at our point of need. Receiving Jesus as our Savior was our need. Now our need is to learn the depths of the truth of our salvation, and make God’s truth what we believe. His truth becomes our truth. And we live what we believe.
Don’t reason and analyze with your mind. Surrender to the Holy Spirit. Allow Him to challenge your human reasoning. Allow Him to teach you the Word and guide and empower you as He never has before. Listen with your heart. Believe Him. He will accomplish more in you and through you than you might ask or think.
May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, give you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power. May God fulfill all the good pleasure of His goodness and the work of faith with power, that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 1:17-19, 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12).
© 2023 Lynn Lacher