Masterpiece

Before I start, I want to state this post is not a sympathy vote, a boo-hoo, feel sorry for Terri post,

God has spent many long hours working me through this particular area in my life and he is always very gracious and patient when I default back to the enemy’s lies.

Which, in itself, is a worthy lesson, when with our human instinct is to revert back to lies that the enemy has well embedded into our belief system. God is always so loving and patient. he is kind and understanding. He doesn’t get fed up waiting and move on to the next person and say, oh stuff that, I’ve tried with her and failed, I’ll just forget it. He will never get bored reminding us of our true value and worth.

So getting back to what I wanted to write about… This morning in my daily Bible reading, Ephesians 2, I was reminded of the truth that we are God’s Masterpiece,

“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 2:10 NLT

For all the times I have read this, just this morning I felt prompted to google masterpiece?

I found a few definitions, all around the same description that a masterpiece is a great work, a creation given much praise, an artist’s best work, outstanding creativity.

From someone who loves nature and is often blown away by the beauty of this earth, I’m completely amazed that we humans are classed as his best work. Hard to fathom really! And even harder to fathom when if, like me, you have spent the first 30 odd years of your life believing that you got here by accident.

I’ll not beat about the bush or sugar coat this truth and, in advance, if this causes any family member distress, I can only apologise. But being the result of a drunken fumble, being denied for a lot of years, and kept as a dirty secret from family, most definitely left some room for the enemy to get in and feed me lies.

Thankfully for me, God had a plan and I was placed with great foster parents who gave me a great life and loved me so well; I’m so thankful for them and I’m here now writing this, so it’s all good.

“You go before me and follow me. You place your hand of blessing on my head.”

Psalms 139:5 NLT

The point that I want to make is that the enemy has gone to a great effort from a very young age to convince me that I was an accident, unwanted, arrived by mistake and a lot of other lies he has managed to freeload onto the back of the “you were a mistake lie”

I know I’m not alone. This is the enemy’s favourite scheme, get them while they are young! I know you don’t have to be the result of an affair or end up in the foster system to believe these lies either. The enemy is the master deceiver and he can take something small and insignificant and twist it into the biggest lie you will ever believe. Even something as small as a child overhearing a silly argument or an off-handed comment;  can be twisted to convince a child they are unwanted or unloved.

But here we read God’s word, his truth, and it’s telling me that I’m His Masterpiece, his greatest work, his outstanding creativity…

How could the artist create a Masterpiece without first having purposely planned and thought through his greatest work? It could not have happened by accident. My thought is when an artist is doing his best piece of work he will use the best materials, take time to plan it through and will have a plan and purpose for it when it is completed. There is no way it just comes from a few left over scraps of material, thrown together absentmindedly with nothing in mind to do with it after.

If what the Bible tells me is true, which I know it is because it is God’s word, I could not be accidental, I could not be a mistake, I had to be created with plans and purpose.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

Jeremiah 29:11 NLT

Sometimes a masterpiece ends up not being cared for very well. Sometimes a masterpiece ends up in the wrong hands. Sometimes a masterpiece can end up hidden away for a long time and undiscovered. Sometimes a masterpiece can get LOST. But it’s value remains the same, it’s worth and purpose for creation doesn’t change.  Sometimes people recognise the art and appreciate it but don’t value the artist  Teri Horton paid five dollars for a Jackson Pollock painting at a thrift store which had an estimated value of fifty million. She didn’t have a clue, but someone knew its value … obviously not the previous owner.

Do you know your value?  Regardless of who did or didn’t see your value to this point. whoever left you in the metaphoric thrift store or hid you away from view, I want to remind you God knows your value, your worth and he calls YOU his Masterpiece. And Jesus knew it because he paid the ultimate price for God’s Masterpiece.

My prayer today is that you know and fully understand this truth, that you have the discernment to know when the enemy is speaking lies to you, and you have the wisdom and strength to call them out and replace them with the whole truth, that is THAT YOU ARE GOD’S MASTERPIECE!

It’s never too late

Sorry for the late blog this week. On Tuesday, I celebrated my thirty-ninth birthday. I’m like wow how did we get here?!  I was giving a lot of thought too, how my life has looked up to now. Thinking over my mistakes and regrets and also to all I have achieved in this time.

I started thinking about what my life could have looked like if I could make some changes in the script of my life to date. There are some things I would do differently. 

I would have persevered more, I would have studied better at school, I would have poured more into my areas of passion, I would have had more patience when learning new skills. I would have listened more to the advice of adults, I would have said NO to a lot more things and enlisted courage to help me say yes to others. I would have been more intentional about making wise decisions for my future. I would have tried to look past the moment and thought about the impact it would have on my future. I would have taken more time for those who were for me and less time chasing approval from those who didn’t care. I would have learnt the art of listening, I would have practised better self-control. I would worked hard at knowing my worth more.

See these changes are all consequences I’m currently living in, some of the consequences have rectified over time. Some I have to live with for the rest of my life. Some consequences are very obvious, like my lack of education and the fact that I currently live in a home, single with my children. Private consequences, like nights crying yourself to sleep because you’re so so lonely or missing out on another opportunity, that leads to thinking about every bad decision you ever made in your whole life, that lead to this one particular time in your life. And you know you have only got yourself to blame. Whether it’s true or not, that’s what we tell ourselves.

The silent consequence of the utter shame and regret of opportunities you missed. The people you hurt, and the ones you didn’t give any recognition to along the way. 

Then there are circumstances beyond my control. Circumstances of how other people treated me due to their problems, or their insecurities, or their bad decisions. And these circumstances have left wounds and scars so deep, conditions and behaviour patterns it would take a physiologist years to navigate through. Circumstances like rejection, neglect, abuse.

These circumstances that happen in all our lives at some stage, that contribute towards how we see ourselves, how we value ourselves and our behaviour. Often these circumstances in our lives lead to the decisions or the consequences that we live to regret. 

I’ll be honest here, I’ve questioned God’s motives a lot on both my circumstances and consequences in my life, why he allowed certain circumstances. I’ve questioned his love for me for allowing these circumstances in the first place. 

Through different Godly encounters prayer and reading the Bible. I have learnt that God’s heart is always for me. I can’t explain it other than what God says and thinks about me, makes what everyone else says and thinks about me a lot less important. That makes the squeals of my consequences a lot quieter and the ache of my circumstances all that bit softer.

What I’ve been thinking about this week is how many people out there allow their circumstances and consequences to disqualify them from a relationship with Jesus.

How many people miss out on a relationship with Jesus because of this faulty belief system that if God truly loved them, these things wouldn’t happen.

How many people miss out because they have reached a certain age where they believe they are past the point of redemption because, like me, another birthday has rolled around and they have over analysed and written themselves off.

Today I want to remind people, no matter what your life has looked like up to this point, no matter what mistakes you have made, no matter how long your list of regrets is, no matter who has rejected you or caused a tsunami of painful consequences in your life, God is for you. His greatest desire is that you accept him and his offer to join the family, regardless of where your life has lead to this point. God Loves You.

He will not judge you on your past, he will not cause you any pain, he is for you and never against you. There is NOTHING you have done to disqualify from his love, and there is NOTHING you need to do to qualify you for his love.  There are no age restrictions or preconditions; the only thing is to believe he sent his son to die on the cross, that he rose on the third day and bought us our salvation.

“So that everyone who believes in him will have eternal life. For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”

John 3:15-16 NLT

My prayer is today if you are analysing your life, wondering who you are and how you got to this point if, for any reason you have decided you are past the point, Jesus can reach you. You are wrong! It’s never too late!