Good morning and the most blessed Thursday to you.
Our church offices are currently under construction, getting painted, along with a few upgrades. And I, of course, can't let a good analogy go to waste. So in our time of devotion today, I want us to reflect on how all of us are under construction. We are all a work in progress… a hot mess. Any of us can look at our own lives and say, “I’m a hot mess. I’m a work in progress.”
But the danger in knowing we’re a work in progress, is that we can get lured into worldly ways of self-help, trying to fix ourselves. The truth is that we can't fix ourselves. We can't do anything for ourselves to make us something that we're not. However, God has called us by his grace through his Son, and through his Holy Spirit. And he shows us that he died for our sins. We are a hot mess. We are sinners. This side of heaven we will always be a work in progress.
But it's not our works that changes us. It's not our works that makes us better. Rather, it is his work that has redeemed us, and continues to make us better. And the beauty of being called into the church, into the body of Christ, is that God gives us help. He gives us brothers and sisters in Christ, who walk with us, lead us, teach us, help us, and pray with us. So we are never called to be alone, or do this by ourselves.
I want to talk about one of the Apostles, the Apostle Paul. He was a bad guy. He was persecuting the church. He was the one who guarded the garments of the people who were stoning Steven, the first martyr of the church. Paul then, as we know, met the Risen Savior on the road to Damascus. His life completely changed. And the Lord called him to take the gospel to the Gentiles.
In Galatians 1:13 Paul writes
You have heard, no doubt, of my earlier life in Judaism. I was violently persecuting the church of God and was trying to destroy it.
Then he talks about how God called him by His grace, and set him apart to reveal his Jesus to the Gentiles. Paul continued writing about his life under the law, as a sinner, a transgressor, a captive. He writes about how it's not our works that justify us. It's not his work that made him righteous, or good, or saved. In Chapter 2:19-20 he writes…
19 For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ, 20 and it is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God,[f] who loved me and gave himself for me.
We are all a work in progress. But we're not called to be works in progress for ourselves. We are called to be works in progress; works that the Lord is doing in and through us… being transformed and molded more and more each day into the redeemed, righteous, sanctified saints that he has called us to be. We are not called to live this side of heaven alone. We are not called to walk or to make ourselves better alone. We are giving his Word through our preached every single week. We are given his grace through baptism, and through communion. And we will continue to live in and through his grace every moment of this side of heaven.
Let’s pray. Lord, we thank you that we are a work in progress. By your grace you have called us to be your own, and you fill us with your Holy Spirit, so that it is not us who lives, but Christ who lives in us. Lord, we ask that as we take on this next day, and each day, and try to be more and more like you, that we are not relying on our own strength, or our own works, but that we remain aware that it is you who are changing us… you who are shaping us… and you who continue to make us perfect by your blood. Lord, we lift all of this to you in the blessed name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
Have an amazing rest of your week, and I will look forward to worshiping with you once again this Sunday in the glory of the name of Jesus Christ.
0 Comments on this post: