Are you a fan of self-help/advice books? What has been your favourite one?
I am unsure if this is classified as “self-help”, but there is one book I have read recently that really spoke to me. The book is “Limitless Life: You Are More Than Your Past When God Holds Your Future” by Derwin L. Gray. It was a book that I read as part of a study with Proverbs 31 Ministries.
The book talks a lot about the labels people put on themselves, and how that doesn’t have to be your truth going forward. Here is a quick snippet from the foreword:
“If things as mislabeled they can create unhelpful boundaries, false limitations. If you label yourself a failure, you limit your chance for success. If you label yourself as weak, you limit your strength. If you label yourself a disappointment, you limit your ability to see that people appreciate you-or that God appreciates you.”
I enjoy the book immensely and it had a lot of great advice for living your best life.
“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 (NLT)
First let’s personalize it.
“For I am God’s masterpiece. He has created me anew in Christ Jesus, so I can do the good things he planned for me long ago.”
The word I chose to focus on was “masterpiece”. Dictionary.com list the definition as so:
1. a person’s greatest piece of work, as in an art.
2. anything done with masterly skill: a masterpiece of improvisation.
3. a consummate example of skill or excellence of any kind: The chef’s cake was a masterpiece.
Other translations of this verse use words like “workmanship” (KJV) and “handiwork” (NIV).
While words like workmanship and handiwork are applicable, I don’t think they convey the same power as masterpiece. To me masterpiece refers to something that is spectacular and amazing, something that the creator poured all of his or her skill into and is very proud of. I believe that is exactly the message that God wants you to hear. He made each and every one of us using all his love and skill. He modeled us after his greatest masterpiece, Jesus Christ, and therefore we are all works of art as well.
This is how God wants us to see ourselves, as he sees us. To him we are his pride and joy, and we were all made for a purpose that he envisioned for us long before we even came to be. Many times we get caught up in our own doubts and fears and this keeps us from the purpose for which we were intended. We need to trust in God’s craftsmanship and love and then we may all be able to be that which we were created to be.