I was getting a haircut the other day when the guy cutting my hair suddenly stopped and said, "Look at that!" I looked over my shoulder, and there was one of the most stunning sunsets I had ever seen. Several people got up out of their chairs and walked outside to take a look. It was such an incredible sunset that people stood there in awe.
Of course, it is a reminder that "the heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork" (Psalm 19:1 NKJV). God is a great artist; there is no question about it.
But God's greatest masterpiece isn't some of the sunsets you may have had the privilege of seeing, or the Alps as spectacular as they are, or the islands of Hawaii and Tahiti, as gorgeous and beautiful as they can be. God's greatest masterpiece of creation that He has ever made is you. And it is me. We are God's greatest masterpieces.
In fact, we read in Ephesians 2:10 that "we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them" (NKJV). That word "workmanship" could be translated, "we are His work of art." We are His poem. Or as another translation puts it, we are God's masterpiece.
Without question, man is God's greatest creation. Man is His crowning achievement. The psalmist wrote of this when he said, "You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother's womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous — and how well I know it" (Psalm 139:13-14 NLT).
If we look at Scripture, it would appear that God has a plan for us, even before we are conceived. In Jeremiah we read, "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations" (1:5 NKJV). God has His plan for a child, even before he or she is conceived, not to mention afterward.
And according to Scripture, there is a unique and custom-designed plan that God has in store just for those who have put their trust in Jesus Christ. God selected you and chose you so "that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus" (Ephesians 2:7 NKJV). That is what God wants to do for you.
If God were to reveal to you today how much He loves you, it would overwhelm you. It would devastate you to think of the love that He has for you in light of the way we all behave sometimes. All He can give us at this point is the down payment of the Holy Spirit, and that alone overwhelms us at times. But in the ages to come, He is going to reveal His kindness and goodness toward us.
As I pointed out earlier, Ephesians says that "we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them" (2:10 NKJV). In addition to "workmanship" speaking of a poem or a work of art, it is a word that speaks of something that is perfect. It carries the idea of rhythm, orderliness, and beauty.
When I look at my life, I don't necessarily see rhythm, orderliness, or beauty. And I can guarantee that I don't see perfection. When we see ourselves, we tend to see our flaws. We see so many things that need to change. But God says, "You are my work of art. You are my poem. You are my masterwork."
Understand, God is not like a doting father who's oblivious to his child's faults. Rather, He is your all-knowing, yet all-powerful Father in heaven who can envision what you will be when it is all said and done. God can look at you and can see what you will become before you have actually become it.
We look at ourselves and say, "I don't get it. This doesn't look like a perfect person. This doesn't look like a work of beauty." But you are a work in progress. It is a process that doesn't happen overnight. It is going to take all of your life on Earth. It won't be completely finished until you get to heaven. Then you will see that you indeed are a perfect work of art — God's masterpiece.
Out of their long and painful journey has come a really helpful survival guide, so to speak. It’s a book called Suffer Strong: How to Survive Anything by Redefining Everything. It’s not just an inspiring story of triumph through trials but a how-to book for accepting God’s plan and recognizing His providence even when it feels like your world is shattered.