2014-08-01 - SHAPE
Ability & Experience
Today, we will continue getting into SHAPE. We're going to do two of the remaining three letters.
Ephesians 2:10 (NASB) For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, so that we would walk in them.
We are His workmanship. This is the same Greek word from which we get the word poem. We are a work of art, sort of like a poem. I like to build things out of wood. I have built about half of the wooden furniture in our house, plus numerous outside projects. Right now, I am working on a fort-like treehouse structure. I also have a lot of landscaping stuff that needs to be done, as well as ideas for couple of furniture pieces.
Let me share some details about one of the pieces I am most proud of - Jordan's bed. I spent weeks designing it, and it is pretty much built to fit this one room. There is just enough room around his bunk to allow doors to open. If it were any wider, the door wouldn't open, and walking around the ladder would be difficult. But if it were any narrower, a full-size bed wouldn't fit. It is a dresser, multiple shelf units, a toy chest (built by my father to fit in one spot), a bed and a desk all in one. I built it very strong, because it must hold up one of my most cherished possessions my older son. Of this bed, I can say "This is my workmanship, created by me for a purpose – for a good work."
God can say the same of us. We are God's hand-crafted original masterpieces - his works of art. Just as my son's bunk has certain abilities that show it was made for a purpose, the abilities in you were placed there for a purpose.
Take a minute or two now, to list some of your abilities.
Now let's talk about experiences:
Romans 8:28 (NASB) And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.
All of our experiences is what this "all things" includes. Whatever you have experienced allows you to relate to others as they go through that. Your experiences also strengthen you; they help form you into the person you are. God can use any experience even things that you are ashamed of to bring him glory.
The woman who had many demons cast from her, the woman caught in adultery, the woman at the well, the Gadarene demoniac, the blind men, the lepers All of them could use those experiences to connect with others, and then ultimately connect them with God. That is our main purpose. We are to reach out to others and God, connecting them together, as we go about our lives.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NASB) Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.
This verse spells out, really clearly, even the bad things needing comforting, afflictions all things.
How are your abilities and experiences shaping you? How could God be molding you? What kind of precious metal will emerge from the refiner's fires?
Until next time
All scripture references are from the KJV unless otherwise noted.