“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”
Sometimes because of the issues of life that can weigh us down, we might lose sight of our purpose and calling for this life.
As I was praying for guidance and direction this morning, the Spirit placed this scripture upon my heart, and I was reminded that in spite of myself and my shortcomings, I can and am making a difference. I want you to see another version too, because although I generally use only the King James version -(KJV), this New Living Testament (NLT), really brings home the point in a simpler way that everyone to grasp ~
“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.” (NLT).
Notice we are “His masterpiece” — and that He “ordained us”, He “created us to good works” long before we even knew our Creator. That means that He already had in mind the things that He wanted us to do and was going to call us to do long before we were even born. As we may read in (Jeremiah 1:4); the Lord said to Jeremiah, “Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee.”
You see, no amount of excuses, failed attempts, false starts, or how unqualified we may think we are will slow us down when the Creator of all things has ordained whatsoever such a thing that He has ordained. The forces if hell cannot stop His plans and purposes ….
Jeremiah was giving the Lord his excuses, or reasoning as to why he couldn’t be used in the next verses, and then the Lord performed an action to equip him: “Then the Lord put forth His hand, and touched my mouth. And the Lord said unto me, Behold, I have put my words in thy mouth.” (v. 9).
He qualified him right there in that instant. Next He told Jeremiah “for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee, and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak” …. “and arise, and speak unto them all that I command thee: be not dismayed at their faces, lest I confound thee before them” ….. “And they shall fight against thee; but they shall not prevail against thee; for I am with thee, saith the Lord, to deliver thee.” (vs. 7-19)
Sometimes we can see the hand of God moving, and other times the storms of life can cloud our vision. But the Lord says, “I will hasten my word to perform it.” (v. 12). Our words will make a difference ….
Often we cannot even see that we have lost our footing and strayed from the path that our Lord has called us to walk, but when He has called us to do something according to His plans, He will equip us to perform His will as long as we are open to obey whatsoever He has for us to do …
All of our excuses and “if only’s” and “but I can’t because” will not stop whatever God’s purpose is for us. If “its and buts were candy and nuts, everyday would be Christmas! It all depends on how available you make yourself to the Spirit.
Why is that, you ask? Very simply because, “He created us to good works” and we are His masterpiece! God does not create junk, nor does He chose the most eloquent speakers or the most capable, powerful, or qualified to perform His will. Let’s look at a few examples:
Moses = stuttered and had anger issues
David = an adulterer, a murderer, and his armor didn’t even fit
Josiah’s wife Zebudah = was a prostitute
Jacob = a liar and a cheat
Solomon = too rich and too smart
Abraham = too old
Peter = was afraid
Naomi = was a widow
Paul = murdered Christians Mariam = a gosipp
Gideon & Thomas = both doubtful
Ruth = left a life that she knew behind to step out in faith and follow a God she had yet to understand ….
If you look at this list and can identify with anyone, or not, don’t be discouraged ~ God will use you to make a difference! It’s up to God — not you, because He created YOU unto good works. You are His masterpiece and His workmanship …
You may be thinking, “how can God use me — I have no money, no talents, no gifts, nothing to give” …. but let me encourage you; God gives provision for the vision. If you can see yourself making a difference, and have a desire to do so, He will equip whom He has called as it is written ~
“For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:
but God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; and base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: that no flesh should glory in His presence.
But of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.”
(1 Corinthians 1:26-30)
The 12 disciples weren’t highly qualified men. They were simply available and willing, and God used simple fishermen to accomplish great things and fulfill His purpose and they became impressive in the things that they did, simply by being obedient to their calling (Mark 10:42-44).
No matter where you are in life today, focus on the fact that God is working behind the scenes! You can trust Him because He is always faithful. His plan for you is good, and He wants to give you a future and a hope!!!
Know that NO ONE is irredeemable and unable to be used by God. Everyone has a gift to share that makes a difference, no matter how small you may think it is. If you clean the church: that is an outreach, because people coming into a church for the first time will often decide in the first 15 minutes whether they want to come back or not. Is it clean, or is there garbage in the parking lot…. is it welcoming? If you make coffee, or vacumn the floor, or restock the restrooms: this is a ministry that makes a difference to someone. Even regular attendance is a gift. (Yep, that one went over like a lead balloon). But you make a difference to someone who is watching you, and trust me, others are watching. When someone sees your faithful attendance, often in spite of circumstances that could give you reason to stay out, yet you come; they are encouraged. You just made a difference!
Sometimes, we make a difference without even saying a word; such in just our obedience to sacrifice our time and pray ….
There are many, many ways in which we, you, and I may make a difference, and many do not even cost a cent.
Encourage someone today. Share a smile or a kind word. That’s a great place to start in making a difference to someone ….
Let us pray ~
Holy and awesome God, at the beginning of a new day, let wonder stir me and awaken me, that I would be alert to Your life-giving presence. I am thankful that You have not left me alone. You have promised to give power to the faint and strength to the powerless. I pray for myself and others who wait for You to renew our strength. I pray that You would touch the lives and hearts of each reader today, and that You would help each one to see the calling upon their lives. Encourage them to see the differences that they are making. Refresh us with Your Holy Spirit that we may boldly live out our faith in this day.
Let me, O Lord, be a light to those whom You will send my way this day, showing them that true strength is in weakness and true power is in faith. In the blessed name of Jesus I pray, Amen.