All in the Family featured the curmudgeonly Archie Bunker. Archie was television’s most famous grouch, blunt, blustering, straightforward and untouched by the PC crowd. He was the archetype of the conservative male. Michael desprately tried to reeducate him, but he persisted in his breviloquence.

Looking back at the last 40 years, we realize: ARCHIE WAS RIGHT!


Eph. 3:20

This year I decided I wanted to experience God, or experience Him more fully.

Earlier this year, I started studying רוח הקודש (thanks Rabbi B) and I taught a 13 week bible class on it.  I also started fasting.  Around the time I was doing the study I started praying that God fill me to greatest extent possible in this dispensation with the Holy Spirit. 

I was brought up in a church where God and especially the Holy Spirit were taught on in terms of what they do not, can not and will not do.  In short, if the Holy Roller, speaking in tongues and swinging from the chandler crowd go for it, God ain't doing it.

This point of view has a great deal of intellectual merit.  There are a number of fakers and false faith healers.  Still I wondered if there might be something I was missing out on. 

I wasn't looking to become one of those "spooky" Christians.  I cringe when I hear people say things like, "God gave me a message for you".  Oh really?  Did He now?  How do I know?  I've never done it, but I want to ask them if they are familiar with Deut. 18:20.

I'm unhappy to report, that there is nothing spooky going on in my life.  No gibbering incoherently, no rolling around on the floor and I'm not laying hands on sick people and having them see or walk or anything.  I can't even walk on water.  Think how much fishing I would get in if I could.  I don't have a boat and being able to walk out to a good spot would be awesome.

What does any of that have to do with Eph. 3:20?

Nothing.  It's all background. 

I still have all the problems I did back in the spring.  Money is still tight.  I'm still working a dead end job because it has health insurance and my wife is still working part time because I can't earn enough for her to stay home.  I still have worries and anxiety.  I very much needed a break and a change for a better in my life or at least a vacation.

That's where Eph. 3:20 comes in.
"Now to Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or imagine,"
Eph. 3:20 can facilitate a crisis of faith.  At least with me it can.  I can imagine a lot.  I'm not above asking God for it either.  Not overly spiritual of me, I know.  What can I say?  Sometimes I get in a good prayer, or at least a good phrase into a prayer.  Like when I started praying for God's best for my life.  That phrase has some merit to it.  Most of the time my prayer life is a to do list for God.

"God gimme...."

I've gotten a little more spiritual.  At least some times.

"God gimme...." I've been known to add an, "If it's your will".  See. I'm getting more devout.  Every once in a great while I rise up to the exalted heights, the pinnacle of supplication, and say:

"God gimme....", PLUS "If it's your will", PLUS this is the clincher word, "please".  I always say, "In Jesus name, Amen", because I'm a good Christian and that's the magic phrase.  Oh, I almost forgot, I always promise to at least tithe back.  If God gives me a billion bucks, the least I can do is spread around a $100 million to the less fortunate.

How could the Creator of the universe not open the flood gates of heaven when He hears prayers like those?

Forget a new job.  With that kind of piety and sure thing praying; Publishers Clearing House, the Lottery and Bill Gates should be showing up to hand over all the cash they can find.
"able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or imagine,"
It says "able".  Not ready willing and egger to by my personal cosmic ATM.  OK, I get that.  Yet "exceeding abundantly beyond" is still in there.  It's gotta mean something and have some application beyond Sunday school.


  1. Reading your post here, I had a thought come to mind I would like to relate to you. You know how God likes to help us prepare for trials that He knows are coming, and He in His mercy wants us to survive?

    Well, I am thinking that maybe part of why so many Christians are on a "short leash" is because when a collapse comes in this country, who is going to survive it best? The one who is already on that short leash, or the one who had serious abundance one day, then the next day he is thrown into economic chaos.

    Think about your mindset right now. You and your lovely wife are able to take care of your needs. If society collapsed tomorrow, that would not be such an abrupt change for you, would it? Think how the cities are going to react when that drastic change comes.

    Like you and Rabbi B have both said before, we do not always know where God is taking us, until we arrive at the destination. Hope this helps.

    Something else I would like to suggest too. This idea is extremely frightening and scary because it involves total submission to God, being willing to step into the unknown, and untying His hands. When you pray for resolution, just pray one single thing. Work it big Lord, as only You can do, and let it be for YOUR glory. Just work it big.
    Then you stand back and let Him work it. No conditions, no requests as to what you want, just letting God do it for you. You would be surprised at what will happen when you truly let God do His mighty work.

    1. This post was part of the Moose Hunt series. I didn't label it that way, because its kind of a flash back that makes part of the hunt story make sense.

      My understanding of "exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask" changed in literally less than a second.

    2. This all makes sense to me. Maybe because I grew up realizing that I was never going to understand everything about God's way of doing stuff, and that it was okay to just take things on faith. No worries.

      You have to realize that I am somebody who grew up on the golden age of Hollywood movies. Not that I am old, but when I was a kid, the local station played old movies of all genres every day except for Sunday. It was a great time to be a movie fan. So I am used to waiting for a payoff to a story.

  2. Not that I am old

    I think that's one of those qualifier statements that lets the hearer know that the opposite is true. :-)

    I remember those movies too.