“Now to the One who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine…” – Ephesians 3:20 (NRSV)
Friday, August 23, 2015 was a day we never could have imagined in New Mexico. “We” were congregations who’d worked on marriage equality for years. We’d lobbied the legislature, written op-eds, held rallies. Some of us had performed countless blessing ceremonies, a.k.a. “weddings” with no legal status. The previous January, a marriage equality bill had again been defeated.
But that Friday, a district judge ruled that nothing in the state constitution prohibited same-gender marriage, and the Santa Fe County Clerk started issuing licenses. As dozens of couples lined up outside the courthouse, the clerk called our church to ask my colleague and me to help officiate. By closing time, we’d performed over 40 weddings, many for people who’d been together for decades. We could never have imagined it.
Neither could we have envisioned this year, when a landmark renewable energy bill passed in a state dependent on oil, gas, and coal. Getting miners, faith communities, environmental organizations, and the electric company at the same table, much less getting them to agree, was far more than we could imagine.
I doubt the Apostle Paul envisioned sustainable energy or same-gender marriage. But he did trust the God of infinite imagination and encouraged the Ephesian Christians to do the same. We need Paul’s reminder, too. Whether we’re trying to envision a just world or the healing of our own hearts, may we trust the One whose power is at work within us and who is “able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine.”
Abundant glory be unto you, God of abundant imagination.