Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – January 22, 2020
Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians 2:9-10, New Living Translation
Who are you? You are a beloved child of God saved by the grace of God, to do the works of God He planned for you a long time ago. When you look in the mirror and voices of condemnation and shame try to tear you down—-see instead how Christ has lifted you up. When you reflect on the good things you have, bow your heart in gratitude for God’s gifts He has given you to carry out His plan to help others. Who are you? You are God’s masterpiece—loved to love others. Salvation is the start of a lifelong process of growing more like Jesus. You are His.
Paul writes from first hand experience. When he was a new convert, skeptics questioned the validity of his salvation experience, but over time wisdom was proven right by the evidence of the Holy Spirit’s fruit in his heart. God took the messy canvas of a life that had been anti-Christ and transformed him to become more and more like Christ. The Lord knew long ago that the profile of Paul would the type of person who would eventually rock the world for Jesus. Like Rembrandt’s masterpiece of the Prodigal Son, the Spirit sketches His masterpiece of your life.
“Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him” (Philippians 2:12-13, NLT).
Do you feel unsure and alone? If so, solitude is the solution to your loneliness. A noisy world only compounds your feelings of fear and living on the fringes of faith. In stillness, quiet your soul, feel the warm embrace and love of the Father, and you will have the courage to carry on. Those loved well in the secret place of the sweet Holy Spirit’s strength have the confidence to publicly confess Christ and be vulnerable with His community of followers. Just as the unsure disciples offered the meager fish and loaves—take what you have, break it and give it to God.
Christ has commissioned your portrait of His love. But you are required to sit still in front of the eternal artist. Observe Him, gently brush the multicolors of His grace across the canvas of your faith. Yes, there is a time to sit in quiet trust and a time to get up and serve in the Spirit’s strength. Do both and you will experience God in deeper intimacy and deeds done in His name. Who are you? You are a masterpiece on display, reflecting the genius of your Creator’s love lived out!
“Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children. Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God” (Ephesians 5:1, NLT).
Heavenly Father, I trust you to grow me more like Christ in my character, motivated by love to serve others, in Jesus’ name, amen.
Where can I find a secret place each day to receive the Father’s love? Who needs my love today to help her get through the day?
You are a masterpiece on display, reflecting the genius of your Creator’s love lived out! #WisdomHunters #masterpiece #truth #Jesus
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