For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:10
Many of us have the tendency to beat ourselves up. We make a few mistakes at work or at home. We fail to realize our own expectations of ourselves. Even worse, others can point out how we failed to meet their expectations for us. Any of those can put us into a tailspin.
In those moments, it can be so comforting to allow the Lord to speak into our lives. We can return to scripture like our text for today and be comforted. Only the Lord has the prerogative to define who we are. Not our co-workers, family, or even ourselves.
But wait! If only God has the power to define me, doesn’t that hold true for others?
- Only God has the power to define my neighbor (also God’s handiwork), even when he irritates me for parking in front of my driveway and I am tempted to define him as a nuisance.
- Only God has the power to define your marriage (a picture of Christ and the church – Ephesians 5) even when you might be discouraged and define it as a big mistake.
- Only God has the power to define your children (a gift of the Lord – Psalm 127) even when they challenge you and you’re tempted to define them as exasperating.
- Only God can define himself (compassionate, gracious, loving, faithful, and forgiving) even when we might be treating Him more like a cosmic vending machine.
Truthfully, only the Lord has the authority to define the entire universe – you, me, others, and the world around us. It seems remarkably self–centered of us to accept God’s gift of redefining us but refuse it with respect to everyone and everything else. Just as we gain value and comfort from knowing God’s word on us, everyone else in our lives is measured the same.
This week, my friends, let’s look beyond ourselves and see the world as God sees it. Let’s walk in the truth of God for ourselves and for the whole world.