He’s Outside the Box

Getting ready for Bible study/translation this morning, I was again caught in the prayer of Paul for the Philippians:

14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom every family[a] in heaven and on earth derives its name. 16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 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, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

20 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, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (Phil. 2:14-21, NIV)

Okay, here’s my quick thoughts on this: Paul is prayer seems to give the dimensions of a box. As I pondered this, I was rudely transported back to high school geometry class–the seedbed of so many nightmares. One positive thing I did gain from that class was the encouragement to consider the multi-dimensions of things: life isn’t one dimensional, flat. Paul seems to be trying to get the Philippians to realize this same thing about God.

No sooner has he drawn them a box, then he goes on to clearly point out how God is outside the box. There is no box that can contain him. He is the God who is exceedingly abundantly about all we could ask or imagine. Wow!

When my girls were little, they could spend hours playing in empty boxes, especially empty appliance boxes. My grandchildren must have inherited the same gene. There is so much that can be done with a box. So many worlds that one can create with a little imagination.

My girls outgrew playing in boxes. The same will probably happen with the grandkids. And that’s okay. Life is meant to be lived outside the refrigerator box.

God wants us to outgrow the childish boxes we may have kept in him, too. What would happen if you let him out of the box? How would your spiritual life change if you allowed him to be bigger than you’ve imagined him to be? How deep, high, and wide is your experience of his love?

I’m going to play–live–outside the box today. I’m not sure what it will look like…but I’m willing to look. How about you?

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