The Masterpiece!

Have you seen or heard something that was deeply moving or thoroughly enthralling? Over the last 2weeks, my family & did a western US whirlwind road trip vacation where I experienced forests that were entirely enchanting, beaches of supreme serenity, waterfalls with endless energy & rock formations that defy human explanation. In some ways, this road trip was a day to day encounter with masterpieces of divine creation that still swim in my thoughts & mesmerize my imagination.
But here’s the greatest masterpiece of all: YOU! You have been fashioned, shaped & sculpted in the image of God & there’s no one who looks, thinks or talks like you! Because you’re God’s masterpiece & you have the breath of the Almighty in your lungs, please never settle for being a clone or repeat. One of the glorious things about a masterpiece is that it’s one of a kind & any reproduction pales when compared to the original. Be all that God has made you to be with the help of the Holy Spirit!

extravagant, spectacular, fantastic and divine living

I’ve really been nestling into Jesus’ words in the Sermon on the Mount in Matt 5-7.  I’m finding them to be extremely revolutionary when I give them more than the cursory scan.  Consider Matt 5:44-48, when He says ” . . ., love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you,  45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.  46 For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same?  47 And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so?  48 Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.  NKJV
In these verses, Jesus is comparing our behavior using 2 measurements – the tax collector (a definite low life in Jesus’ society) and God our Father.  I find it interesting that He challenges us to live in the big-ness of our Heavenly Father.  Consider this:

  • there’s nothing spectacular about living at the lowest common denominator
  • there’s nothing extravagant about doing as little as possible
  • there’s nothing fantastic about getting away with as much as we can
  • there’s nothing divine about doing the same thing as everyone else

Jesus’ words compel us to revert to our genetic predisposition as Christian – to live large, extravagant, generous, kind and simple lives.  He calls us to not flirt with how much is enough, or dance as close to the sin line as we can without getting caught or burned.  Jesus calls us to greatness because of the greatness our Father has put into each of us.  Be extravagant.  Be spectacular.  Be fantastic.  Be a chip off the old block.