Skip to main content

A work like no other

A workman has a particular skill or talent which becomes evident in what is produced as a result of their work. I think this is a pretty fair way to describe what God is - the one who creates not only who we are, but what becomes of our lives. God has created us - not to live our own independent lives, but in Christ Jesus - to live lives FILLED with good works. These "good works" he has prepared for us to do - they are not random acts of kindness, but prepared, purposeful, divine appointments where we connect his love and grace with another's life through the actions we express.

God has made us what we are. He has created us in Christ Jesus to live lives filled with good works that he has prepared for us to do. (Ephesians 2:10)

In this same chapter, our writer focused on the church coming together, not with each individual doing their own thing, but in unity. There is purpose and intent in being in unity and it takes some getting used to as each individual has to lay down what they see as their "rights". The "blending" of personalities in any purposeful intent takes some amount of effort. We see the "effort" of unity - it begins not with what we do to accomplish it, but with what God did in us to provide the beginning of this unity! Even the grace to live in unity is an action of God in our lives. Apart from the "workman", the workmanship is useless! If you have ever created something, you might have had a few "fails" in the creation process, like when you burn a batch of cookies or have a new recipe just bomb big time. Your "workmanship" didn't live up to the potential you hoped to exhibit in the end. This is the case with much of what we set out to do on our own - we bomb big time! Why? It is simple - we are God's workmanship, so trying to display our own "creative process" is kind of like telling the workman we'd rather be burnt cookies!

God (the workman) has made (past tense) us (you and I) what we are (present tense). Do you see anything here? There is both past and present tense in this sentence structure. The past tense, has made, describes the finished work of Christ in our lives. In God's eyes, we are perfect - created in the image of God, redeemed by the blood of the perfect Lamb of God, complete in every way. In the present tense, we are chosen to do something which reflects his workmanship like nothing else can - living lives filled with the good works he has PREPARED for us to do. Sometimes we set out to do something and in the end, we realize God has done something even greater than we ever imagined. It was not because we did it, but because he prepared ahead of time for us to be an instrument of his purpose in that moment. This is amazing to me - how God orchestrates the activities of my life and yours, totally aware of each choice we will make before we make it, and aligning every opportunity for us to display his workmanship so perfectly. The "has prepared" is past tense, but it is lived out in the present tense. The workman envisioned each good work - then he orchestrated the means by which his workmanship would be displayed!

I have come to the conclusion a long time ago that the best of my resolutions to do something a particular way are really worthless because I don't know the end from the beginning! At best, I set out on a course I hope will lead me to the desired end. What I have come to realize is the importance of relying not on my own plan, but on the prepared purpose of the workman in my life! In "resolving" to "do" certain things, let's not lose sight of the "prepared" purpose of our lives. We can only find that prepared purpose by consulting the one who created us in to fulfill these things in the first place - the DIVINE workman - God himself. Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce

Scrubbed Up and Ready to Go!

Have you ever considered just how 'clean' your hands really are? In nursing school, I remember this exercise we did where we rubbed hand lotion on our hands, then were told to go scrub them to practice a good handwashing technique. Most of us were going the extra mile by scrubbing back and front, in between the fingers and then even up above the wrist area. Surely our hands were clean, right? We came back to the room for the 'inspection' of our handwashing jobs only to find our instructor had turned the lights off, had a black light set up, and inspected our hands under that glowing beast! Guess what else 'glowed'? Our hands! The lotion was 'laced' with this 'dust' that illuminates under the black light, allowing each of us to see the specific areas around cuticles, under nails, and even here and there on our hands that got totally missed by our good 'handwashing' technique! What we thought was clean really wasn't clean at all. Clean