Why We Need Epiphany(s)


January 31, 2021

Ephesians 1:18 (NIV)

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people,


We are on a journey together. It is the journey of awakening. 

You will remember, yesterday we jumped into this biblical prayer for great awakening. 

I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation . . . (Ephesians 1:17a)

The most important point of this prayer is the BIG WHY. 

so that you may know him better. (Ephesians 1:17b)

This is our ambition, aspiration and agenda. Everything will spring from here. But I must warn us, until we come to this aim, we will go nowhere in our faith. We will be stuck in religious exercises at best. It can be the hardest thing for people who have been in church all their lives to come to a place where they are willing to confess before God and each other that maybe, . . . just maybe, . . . there is more of Jesus to know than they have known. It takes humility for me, the author of the Daily Text, to say after decades of being at this, that I remain a novice, a beginner, perhaps even more asleep than I am awake yet. I need for God to give me the Spirit of wisdom and revelation so that I may know him better. You do too. We must lay aside our religious resumes and our spiritual merit badges and come to the table like children, like beginners, (even beggars—though we don’t have to beg) over and over and over again. 

Watch now, where Paul takes this prayer for great awakening.

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened

Nothing says “epiphany” like that. An epiphany is a revelation. Often, it is not exactly new, but finally “seeing” what you have been looking at for so long. Epiphanies come when by some mysterious shift we cease to look “at” something and begin to see “into” it. The “eyes of our hearts are enlightened.” Epiphanies happen when observation gives way to flashes of insight. The edges of our faith so easily become flattened by the warp and woof of life, by traumatic disappointments on the one hand, and on the other by thousand mile stretches of endless monotonous flat highways across the great “plains” of life (sorry Kansas!). 

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened

This is a prayer for awakening, which is to say “epiphanies.” We are in the days of the Epiphany of Jesus Christ. It is an awakening season, the period of time after Advent and the Feast of Christmas and prior to Ash Wednesday and the forty days to the cross (a.k.a. Lent). 

This calendar has cycles, but I refuse to call it “cyclical,” as though it were this never-ending set of religious motions the people of God cycle through year after year. We are on a decidedly linear calendar. Time had a beginning. Eternity broke into time in the coming of Jesus Christ. Time will have an end, at the second coming of Jesus Christ, at which point the glorious age to come will fully come with the Resurrection of the dead, the New Heavens and the New Earth and the Kingdom of God in all its fullness. This is the movement, not “the motions.” 

The Awakening Calendar aims to keep us alert, attuned and moving in step together in and toward this glorious reality. It’s why we made this Awakening Calendar poster we want on the wall of every home, office, man-cave, she-shed, church and sports arena—to remind us in an ongoing way that WE ARE HERE. We, the people of God, descend together and ascend together. We fast and we feast together. We rejoice and mourn together. We read, pray, band and sow together in our hearts, homes, churches, and cities. 

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened

This prayer will not stop. It will get even bigger tomorrow—much bigger. Stay with us. 


Our Father, open the eyes of my heart. My heart needs to see more and further and clearly. My heart needs bi-focals to see what is so close and also to see what is on the horizon; maybe tri-focals to see Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in new and deeper and richer technicolor ways. Open the eyes of my heart. I see what I see, and I confess that if my vision were blurry I wouldn’t know it, because it is all I know. Make my heart humble that it might become a place of epiphanies, small and large, to behold your glory and goodness in ways that I can never be the same again. In Jesus’ name, Amen. 


How is your heart vision? Invite the Spirit to search your heart. Are you coming to a place where you can say of your past faith journey—I am thankful for it, but I know there is more I have yet to taste and see? Even that you may be yet asleep? 

For the Awakening,
J.D. Walt

P.S. Three invitations here: 1. Reserve your complimentary ticket for A Night with New Room: Ash Wednesday. 2. Check out the 2021 Awakening Calendar. 3. Grab a songbook for Soundtrack

Share today's Wake-Up Call!


WHAT IS THIS? Wake-Up Call is a daily encouragement to shake off the slumber of our busy lives and turn our eyes toward Jesus. Each morning our community gathers around a Scripture, a reflection, a prayer, and a few short questions, inviting us to reorient our lives around the love of Jesus that transforms our hearts, homes, churches, and cities.

Comments and Discussion

One Response

  1. In my opinion this whole last year has been a sort of epiphany. My eyes were opened to see that the world (culture) that I grew up in is quickly disappearing. Institutions that were once accepted as trustworthy no longer seem to be. There is the temptation to become angry or depressed with our current political, economic and cultural upheaval. But then I am reminded through the reflection on God’s word that the King is still on His throne. My prayer is for wisdom and understanding so that I can remain on that narrow path that leads to eternal life. I know that this journey is meant to be in community with others. So my prayer also includes the request to not only be drawn closer to the Trinity but also to my faith companions as well. I will continue to ask to know Jesus more.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *