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).
Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done (v.9, NLT). Salvation is a gift of mercy and grace from our loving Father (v.8). My transformation from a person who followed her sinful nature to a child of God who displays the character of Christ is the work of God. It is my transformation, not my deeds, that is God’s masterpiece. God is painting a picture of mercy, grace, and love over the canvas of my life.
When I hold onto guilt, I obscure the vivid colors of God’s masterpiece of incredible grace and kindness (v.7), much as soot dulled the finish of the great cathedral art in Europe. Trying to cover up my unworthiness with good deeds is not the same as deeds of compassion arising from my gratitude for what Christ has done for me. To be God’s masterpiece means I must rely on him for transformation—asking for his grace and allowing him to change me—so he can showcase his love, mercy, and grace.
Father, thank you for your merciful, compassionate gift of grace to me. When I am tempted to measure myself against others, remind me I have no reason to boast. When I fail, grant me a glimpse of the masterpiece you are creating to show others your love and kindness. Guide me to the works you have planned for me to do so that others may know your Son, in whose name I pray, Amen.