Thursday, January 21, 2010

You are God’s Masterpiece

I just watched the early morning show on TV showing stretches you can do right in your office chair to relieve stress. Is Jesus stressed about your job? Here is His perspective on you and your job.

1 - God initiates your work.
“…the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does” (John 5:19). God wants to lead you to your workplace not follow you there. Don’t ask Him to come to work with you, follow in His footsteps. Jesus’ pattern for doing His Father’s will was to watch to see where His father was working and join Him in his work. He followed the Father’s initiative in His work.
2 - God does your work! Yes, really!
First, what is your job? Show Him off in your work; proclaim HIM, admonishing and teaching EVERYONE with ALL wisdom, so that we may present everyone PERFECT in Christ (Col 1: 28-29). WOW tired yet? How can God expect all that from me? By “…struggling with all HIS energy which so powerfully works in me!” Working with His energy, can’t you see the energizer bunny getting it all done, thanks to the special batteries? He is doing the work through you so don’t try to handle it on your own.
3 – God finishes the work He starts.
You can be “confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Phil 1:6). Jesus finishes what He starts. He is working on you, in you and through you. You are His masterpiece and He will not leave you half finished. “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” (Eph 2:10). So, go to work! Do the work He planned for you and let Him do His work in and through you.
Watch this Youtube for a great illustration of how he's working on you. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UXut0HxncvY
If you are not sure He has started, or is currently, working in you, email me martha@riveroaksbc.com

Thursday, January 14, 2010

My extravagant, lavish, ‘excessive’ God!

Extravagant! What picture does that word conjure up in your mind? Excessive? Too much? Over the top? Wasteful perhaps? How about Godly? My no frills, conservative, Mennonite upbringing taught me to scrimp, save, reuse, and never waste. Don’t spend money on what is not practical and useful. These attributes were presented as Godly. Thriftiness is next to Godliness, right?

Last month I had the opportunity to brush up on my childhood ice skating skills. Thankfully I didn’t break any bones, the ice, or my brother’s camera. He was taking pictures of the ice. The bay had just frozen over and there were thousands of fragile frost fragments that were so small they couldn’t be seen without a mega-magnifier lens. My brother was on his face on the ice taking pictures but I didn’t really appreciate what he was doing, until I saw the pictures blown up on the computer screen. WOW! How extravagant! Lavish!

These microscopic clusters were too fragile to touch but they were more intricate and dazzling than any king’s crown or queen’s tiara. It seemed like a waste to have thousands of these stunningly beautiful crystals flung across the ice on the bay where no one saw them. Is that Godly? Absolutely!

He is lavish and extravagant, showering us with blessings we don’t deserve or appreciate, pouring his love out on those who ignore him, use him, hate him or deny that he even exists. “God demonstrates his own (lavish)love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom 5:8). How wasteful! How not-thrifty. “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.” (1 Tim 6:17). Did you get that? He richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment! Lavishly generous, extravagantly excessive, that is my God! I think I’ll go enjoy everything he has provided, and while I am at it I think I’ll choose to be extravagant, lavish, Godly, towards others today!