I cannot think of a time in my life where I was guaranteed success. I am not able to recall a time when I knew that nothing I was about to do could fail. Oh, to be sure, I was not lacking in confidence but I was never quite assured beyond a shadow of a doubt that I could not fail at something. My mother did her level best to assure me. My friend did his best to reassure me. I had many choir directors and creature comforts all in my corner promising that I could make it through whatever may come so long as I was prepared. But the simple truth I arrive at now is that nothing I did was successful because of any of them. Nothing I succeeded in was a result of my work alone. All success and failure, attempts and misses, hits and triumphs were because God was within me.
This letter Paul wrote to Ephesus was closed with that admonition that we recognize that when we consider our paths forward, first we must consider God. God is able to do not just all tings, but do them exceedingly. That is to say beyond our own limited expectations and abilities. His power is in us and that is such a concept that I’m afraid I cannot fully comprehend it. It seems that what Paul is saying is that God works his miracles and everyday actions though us. His power is infinite and beyond all measure. The same God who flung stars against the inky blackness of space and spun fire and dust into globes and upon those globes he placed life and life more abundantly. Now if God can do all that, what re can he do in our lives? He can do exceedingly in journal lives if we just allow his power to work in and through us. This is why Jesus said it is better that I leave you now so that I may be in you. Being in us is so much more powerful than him simply being with us. The Lord our God is all powerful and his word does not go out and return void. When he is at work within us, his will is sure to be done.
But the last part is that once we recognize the power God has within us, we are to offer glory to his son Jesus the Christ. But what is the church (vs. 21) he speaks of? A building? A temple? A holy place? Yes, but more. Church is the people of God. This was the early church and not known as Christian yet but rather The Way. We are the church. For many, the only church a person will see is sour works here as we live our daily lives. Paul wanted the church of Ephesus to understand that God is infinitely powerful, he is at work within us as his believers, his work will be done in greater ways than we can possibly imagine, and the power within is not in a building of stone but of flesh.