God’s Masterpiece

masterpiece1

When you look at the canvas of your life, what do you see?

Maybe you see it riddled with mistakes. The lines might not be straight. Parts of the drawing have gone outside of the lines. The paper is torn, dirty. Stains splattered across the painting serve as a constant reminder of past mistakes [1]. People in the painting are blurry, once good friends have become un-recognisable.

No form of eraser or glue can fix the mess which you’ve created.

What would you give to start again? How much money would you pay to have your messy, torn up canvas turned into a masterpiece?

For we are God’s masterpiece.’ – Ephesians 2:9

We don’t become God’s masterpiece after we have fixed up the canvas of our life. Not God’s masterpiece once we’ve sorted out those messy lines and torn edges.  We are God’s masterpiece. Not in a few weeks, months or years. We already are.

His prized possession.

Saying “we are God’s masterpiece” is one thing, believing it is a whole new beast. But living in knowledge of it, for many people, is one hill too many.

And it’s something I struggle to actually believe and live out too.

Surely we all see flaws in our character and faults we’ve made in life? Maybe it is just me. I can recall numerous times when I’ve taken a step back to look at my canvas and not been all that proud.

This struggle brings me to a few questions:

  • Considering my past, how can I still be called a masterpiece?
  • What does it mean to live knowing I am God’s prized possession?

Let’s paint a picture of what it looks like.

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THE ILLUSTRATION

mona-lisa

When I think of a masterpiece the Mona Lisa comes to mind, the world’s most famous painting, painted by Leonardo Da Vinci. So for the sake of discovering what being God’s masterpiece implies, we will use this as our analogy.

A painter or sculptor puts a lot of time into making a piece of art. Some sources say that the nose of the lady in the Mona Lisa took 12 years to paint, although I tend to question Leonardo’s potential procrastination tendencies. But you get the idea I’m sure – a masterpiece is not made overnight.

Often a painter will base their picture off an image of sorts, either through a small picture or a model sitting in front of them. Leonardo Da Vinci used a model in front of him – and his attempt to re-create the image of this person is depicted in the painting.

A painter develops a lot of pride for their painting. Once completed, many present their piece of art in public places. It brings joy to see the amount of time and effort put into the painting was all worth it.

The Mona Lisa is completely and utterly a reflection of Leonardo Da Vinci. When experts comment on the painting, they direct all praise to him, the painter.

A piece of art cannot boast of itself – it can only boast of its creator.

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DRAWING THE COMPARISON 

God put a lot of time and thought into creating us. God says even before he made the world he knew and loved us (Ephesians 1:4). I don’t know about you – but that’s really knowing your creation. That before he made us, we were known by him. He specially made us, knitted each of us together in our (respective) mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13).

God doesn’t mass produce his pieces of art – he isn’t required to meet a quota each day. Each piece of art he creates is special. We are all unique, known by him.

We are the workmanship of God himself, made in his image (Genesis 1:27). Essentially, God has created us to look and be like him. Let that sink in. God himself has created us to resemble him.

The Lord takes pleasure in us, his people and his creation (Psalm 149:4). Just like a painter takes pride in his piece of art, so too God genuinely loves and cares for his creation. How awesome that is!

Therefore, as the masterpieces of God, we cannot boast of our good aspects of character. We cannot boast of our good skills/characteristics in certain areas. As his masterpiece, all praise and glory should be directed to our great artist.

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SOMETHING TO BRUSH OVER

‘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

Through death and resurrection, Jesus claims to have carried all of our mistakes. He carried the collective, the whole world’s canvas – riddled with mistakes and errors – and provided for us a clean sheet. God has created us anew in Christ Jesus. Through him, we can claim the beginning of his work in us – to becoming his masterpiece.

But don’t hear me wrong in this. There is no doubt our mistakes have human consequences, and becoming a Christian doesn’t just wipe them all away from having happened in the first place. Stating the obvious I know, but important to say regardless.

Rather I believe we can suffer, recover and learn from our mistakes, whilst knowing we are completely forgiven of them through Jesus. My point, and what God has told us through scripture, is that we are already his masterpiece because of the image we were made in – and that was of God himself. Nothing we do can separate us from that.

Furthermore, as God’s masterpieces we were not made to just sit on a mantle and be admired (this is where the analogy gets a bit dodgy). As highlighted above in the bible verse, we have been made new so that we can do the good works he planned for us.

Therefore we are advocates for the living God (2 Corinthians 5:20). I’ve always hated the word responsibility – it usually implies me doing things I don’t want to do – clean my room, do the dishes, be an adult, etc. But this responsibility is different. What a massive privilege, yet huge responsibility we have to represent our awesome creator!

play-your-role

Hawthorn Football Club’s motto is to ‘Play Your Role’. Everyone plays a different role and position on the field. Yet when each part is executed correctly, the whole team can (and has proven to) be successful.

It is the same for us as people scattered throughout the world. We are all placed in different situations. We serve different roles and positions – some of us may be pastors, others may be teachers. Some may work at their local shop, others may be homeless.

As individuals, we are just one piece. Yet we all play a part in God’s big jigsaw (plan) – in the workplace, sports, school and social arenas. One piece in a jigsaw is insignificant, somewhat useless. But together, have the potential to create an awesome picture.

Let God work out the puzzle – whilst we stay present in his house.

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THE FINISHING TOUCHES

‘They took the thirty pieces of silver – the price at which [Jesus] was valued by the people of Israel’- Matthew 27:9

30 pieces of silver was the same price used as compensation for a slave’s accidental death (Exodus 21:32). Significant however, is this payment for Jesus wasn’t made after the event of death, as compensation for some sort of accident. It was made prior to Jesus death. The people were signalling their intentions, essentially saying “this man is dead to us.” 

Here we have Jesus, the Son of God. His own people and creation valued him as nothing. To them Jesus was as good as a slave, dead to them (Mark 10:44-45).

But despite the world completely rejecting him and treating him as nothing, Jesus knew his value in God. That despite being whipped, spat upon and taunted by all, Jesus’ self-worth was not based on other people’s opinions.

His identity was found in God. 

When we find ourselves against the world, the subject of ‘persecution’ of sorts, we need to realise our worth in our Father’s eyes. When others point out the flaws and mistakes on the canvas of our life, we can confidently redirect them to the clean canvas that Jesus has given us access to. And in that, we can truly begin to become the masterpiece we were made to be.

“How deep the Father’s love for us, how vast beyond all measure. That he should give his only Son, to make a wretch his treasure”

So I’ll ask again: when you look at the canvas of your life, what do you see?

You may see a mess, nothing is even remotely close to perfect. You might only see the broken pieces of mistakes and flaws in your life.

But our broken pieces have been made a mosaic.

Re-assembled in him.

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REFERENCES

[1] Skit Guys, S 2015, Our Mess, God’s Masterpiece, online video, December 27, accessed 27 April 2016, <https://skitguys.com/videos/item/our-mess-gods-masterpiece&gt;.

[2] Gibson, T 2013, ‘God’s Masterpiece’, Image, 5 February, accessed 15 April 2016, <http://www.lightbearers.org/gods-masterpiece/&gt;.

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64 thoughts on “God’s Masterpiece

  1. thesixfootbonsaitacy April 27, 2016 / 4:55 pm

    I don’t want to live any of my mistakes over again but I believe that they serve a purpose (or will) and I vote “no” to redos. The more I face what I’ve done and use it for good purpose the better!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac April 27, 2016 / 10:34 pm

      Totally agree! And I believe we can learn and suffer from our mistakes, whilst knowing we are completely forgiven of them through Jesus. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

      Liked by 2 people

    • JamesFool September 5, 2016 / 11:05 am

      I think here are no mistakes, if you do something, and wanted it to have a different outcome than it is, than the feeling is unpleasant. Okay that happens, but these events can make you learn. So what did you expect in the situation, what can you do different next time?
      Every “mistake” is a chance to grow – James Fool

      Liked by 1 person

      • stew2200 June 28, 2016 / 6:00 pm

        I enjoyed how you painted Gods view of value on our lives, in such simple yet powerful terms.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Jonathan Camac June 28, 2016 / 11:29 pm

        Thanks for the feedback brother! Stoked you were impacted by it in some way.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Amaya Milne April 30, 2016 / 12:42 am

    Hey Jonno!! Wow! To be honest, this is something I am struggling with right at this very moment. Grace is hard to understand! I’m loving the way God is using you powerfully to speak through! Will definitely be pondering this, God bless ya buddy 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac April 30, 2016 / 4:04 am

      That’s awesome Amaya! Glad to hear it has been of some use 🙂 Hope your trip is going excellent too. God bless ya May-Dog! 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  3. keithietrojan27 May 25, 2016 / 7:48 am

    Hi.thank you for sharing this article. i am actually in the process of learning how to paint using watercolor and it is so timely that you’ve used painting as an example.Despite my flaws and faults, I am amazed that God still sees me as a masterpiece. I’m reminded of how amazing our God is to us!Godbless you and please write more articles!You did a great job.

    Like

    • Jonathan Camac May 25, 2016 / 11:14 am

      That’s awesome! We are sons and daughters of an awesome God, and to think we are his masterpieces – what a huge statement. Thanks for your feedback, appreciate it!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. grendaliskingsite May 26, 2016 / 3:04 am

    Jon, Great post. Would I change anything, only at the age of 17 when I was given a choice to make, and picked wrong. But saying that I would be totally different from the man I am now. The Divine (In your case God) created me, rust and all, and I failed, fell, and cried, but every time I got up I was stronger, and harder, and outside several major injuries I have been carrying with me for decades what the Divine made is what it was meant to be. I am what I am, I will be what I will be, for I have been created to live as I need too, just to end up as I need to be. But is that not the point of being Human. If we were perfect then we would have wings and play the harp. To mess up is to be human.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac May 26, 2016 / 5:08 am

      Cheers mate. Exactly my point. Mistakes are part of being human – and we can learn a lot from them, as you’ve mentioned and I have written in the blog. Nobody is without flaws, and hard times in this life are guaranteed. No doubt. But that’s the beauty of God’s grace – because even despite our many failings, he welcomes us with open arms. Thanks for reading!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. pipermac5 May 31, 2016 / 2:48 am

    Yes, we ARE God’s masterpiece, His treasure, but that honored-status didn’t come cheap. God couldn’t simply “forgive and forget”. His justice demanded that our debt HAD to be paid, either by us, or by Someone else. Our human-minds can’t comprehend the incredible cost of our salvation, but that great old hymn does a pretty good job of describing it. God, who loves us SO much that He can’t bear not having us in His kingdom, chose to pay our debt Himself, in the person of Jesus Christ. The physical torture was horrific, but that was just the tip of the iceberg. Christ, who had never been out of His Father’s presence for even one picosecond in all eternity, had to bear His Father “turning out the lights” of His presence as He plumbed the depths of Hell itself to pay the penalty, the cost of our sins. He had to experience the full wrath of a just and holy God.

    Lest we ever think that God’s grace and His favor are cheap, we should be reminded every time we come to His Table of the incredible cost of our place at His Table. May we never take our status in Christ for granted.

    Blessings!

    Steve

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac May 31, 2016 / 9:47 am

      Completely agree with you mate. I too often take his grace offered to me for granted. Jesus’ suffering was very real, I can’t get my head around the sort of pain he would have gone through. But I know one thing – his love for us was greater than the pain, intense as it was. How awesome that is! Bless you mate.

      Like

  6. theutopiauniverse June 2, 2016 / 11:44 am

    Never thought of it in this way, thank You for maybe opening my eyes and seeing things from a different view. This is a great post. Thank You.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac June 2, 2016 / 11:58 am

      Thanks for taking the time to read it! It’s a pretty long one. Glad you found it helpful, thanks for the feedback! Bless you mate.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac June 2, 2016 / 10:53 pm

      And the only possible response we can give to him in return is our lives. Our God is so so great. Thanks for reading Tami!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. theancients June 23, 2016 / 1:38 am

    Great teaching post – filled with wisdom.

    I especially love: “Saying “we are God’s masterpiece” is one thing, believing it is a whole new beast. But living in knowledge of it, for many people, is one hill too many. And it’s something I struggle to actually believe and live out too.

    As your post illustrates, the beauty of God is that He doesn’t require us to come to Him perfect; however, by continuously abiding in Him we grow towards perfection.

    What an awesome God!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac June 23, 2016 / 2:29 am

      Amen to that! One of our pastors recently stated it like this: “God’s riches at Christ’s expense.” May we never forget the intense sacrifice made for our clean canvas. Bless you mate.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. ReDiscover at 40 June 25, 2016 / 6:09 am

    Hi Jonathan. Thank you for liking my post. It’s good to know a fellow Christian and I must say you really have a gift for writing and your way of putting scriptural verses in a whole new level really hits home.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac June 26, 2016 / 1:08 am

      Appreciate your kind words brother! All glory to God. Enjoyed reading your blog too. Bless you mate.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac June 27, 2016 / 11:21 pm

      No dramas – thanks heaps man. Appreciate you visiting and reading my blog. Have a good one brother 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. annj49 July 4, 2016 / 8:20 am

    I was thinking of the Skit Guys Masterpiece as I was reading this, and wanted to post it in a comment, but then found it at the end of your blog post 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  10. grandmapeachy July 4, 2016 / 8:26 pm

    Great post. God knew us from the beginning before we were so carefully and lovingly knit in our mother’s womb. He knew every choice we would make and He created us with the capability to learn from our poor choices. The person we become is truly His masterpiece and when we come to Him, repent, and accept His Son, Yeshua, as our Savior the work He does in us turns the ashes of our burned out lives into a beautiful masterpiece indeed.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. The True Light! July 7, 2016 / 5:33 pm

    Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection completed our reconciliation to our Father. It is truly in Him that we can find our value in God.

    Steve

    Liked by 1 person

  12. The True Light! July 21, 2016 / 4:34 pm

    Good day my friend! Well, you will have to write a few more posts as I have read all of what you have written! You are a good writer Jonathan, and seem to speak the truth from God’s word. May the Lord bless and keep you…

    Steve

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac July 21, 2016 / 11:32 pm

      You are by far my number one supporter, haha. Thanks heaps Steve! I’ve actually nearly finished a piece that should be done in within the next few days – stay tuned 🙂 God bless you too brother!

      Liked by 1 person

      • The True Light! July 22, 2016 / 3:05 pm

        Thank you, my friend! I just like the way you handle the “pen” Jonathan. Keep studying the word and fellowship with members of like-minded faith…

        Read and comment on other similar blogs and your readership will grow.

        Steve

        Liked by 1 person

  13. The True Light! July 29, 2016 / 4:26 pm

    Enjoy your weekend, Jonathan…

    Steve

    Liked by 1 person

  14. lornajfarrell September 27, 2016 / 1:31 pm

    Great blog – really challenged by it. I know this Scripture, but don’t really KNOW this Scripture, if you know what I mean. I love that image of God lovingly crafting us – it can be so hard to live daily in that place of trust and Faith..but our lives are so much better when we do! Great to read a piece that marries Faith and Works..both are part of our Christian walk..but they both come from Him first LAVISHING His Love and Mercy upon us when we least deserve it. What a Mighty God we Serve… Thanks for the encouragement, Blessings

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac September 27, 2016 / 2:32 pm

      Wow, what an awesome summary! Appreciate your time heaps Lorna. Glad you were encouraged in some way 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  15. anchoredfreedom September 28, 2016 / 6:06 pm

    This is one of the greatest blog posts I’ve read on being God’s Masterpiece! Great job and thanks for the reminder that we are all His greatest work! 🙂

    Like

    • Jonathan Camac October 3, 2016 / 5:33 am

      Glad you got so much out of it anchoredfreedom! Our God is so good. Hope the rest of your day is epic 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Sarah Lea Stories November 2, 2016 / 10:45 pm

    Beautifully written. “We don’t become the masterpiece, we are the masterpiece.” Incidentally, one of my favorite quotes from the Bible is “for we are fearfully and wonderfully made.” Joel Osteen has mentioned in his sermons that we are “God’s masterpiece.” Our worth is inherent, and nothing, no one, can ever take that away. If more people knew that, the world would be a better place, for when we know that all of us have worth, we treat each other as such.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac November 3, 2016 / 12:06 am

      I write about this stuff, about us being God’s masterpiece. But heck, I need reminding of this so often myself. Glad that you also got something out of this piece 🙂 appreciate your time in reading this!

      Like

  17. cottagegirlpatty January 26, 2017 / 3:04 pm

    I loved this, Jonathan! It’s a very encouraging way to start my day! I’ve made a few pieces of art over the years, so that we are reflections of our Creator really resonates with me. It also makes me stop and pause before I badmouth someone, knowing I am speaking ill not only of their Creator but of mine as well!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac January 27, 2017 / 1:11 am

      Well said! I was challenged in that respect when I was writing this. Just considering that we are all made by the same God – who are we to gossip or inadvertently neglect people? Appreciate your time and interaction with this post 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  18. touchdownswithtiana February 16, 2017 / 3:12 pm

    Personally, I loved the format of this post. From the example of the Mona Lisa to the scriptures stated. It’s our job to be all that God has created to be no matter what man says/does. This post was PHENOMENAL!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jonathan Camac February 20, 2017 / 7:41 pm

      Stoked to hear you were encouraged by the post Tiana! Thanks for your kind words. God bless 🙂

      Like

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