Suggested Reading ...

As requested by a number of you, herewith a few books that I strongly recommend.

The Case for the Psalms:Why they are Essential - N.T.Wright

Journey to the Common Good - Walter Brueggemann

Gagging Jesus: Things Jesus said we wish he hadn't - Phil Moore

Worship Matters: Leading Others to Encounter the Greatness of God - Bob Kauflin

The Writings of the New Testament : An Interpretation - Luke Timothy Johnson

These titles I have been able to source through happy reading!

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Home DAILY DEVOTIONS Daily Devotions An Unfinished Masterpiece.
An Unfinished Masterpiece. PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Grant Nuss   
Friday, 09 December 2016 15:38

Philippians 1:6; "Have patience, God isn't finished yet."

"God sees in you a masterpiece about to happen" (Anonymous). Imagine a pearl in this context. A pearl begins either as a grain of sand or even a parasite which enters an oyster’s shell and irritates its soft tissue. The irritant then gets covered and strengthened with layers of mother-of-pearl or nacre and, over the course of time, a beautiful pearl develops. Similarly Scripture teaches that every human starts out as an irritant. Think about it: We are enemies of God and dead in our sins, yet, by God’s grace, those of us who believe in Christ are declared righteous.  Then slowly but surely God then envelopes us in Himself and practically transforms us into disciples or pearls who reflect His character and beauty. God, who called us to live in impossibilities, will accomplish what He has designed us to do and be. Now, of course, we always want to know ‘how’, or whether there is a formula we can apply. But know this today, God is working within you right now and, layer upon layer is making you into that beautiful pearl, that masterpiece. The key is for us never to doubt His purposes.  God is faithful to keep His promises, and He has destined that, someday, you will be like Christ. So even though you cannot always see His hand at work, Paul tells us that God is always at work moving us toward a time when we will be perfect in every respect. In fact, even in this life we can make huge progress as followers of Christ, and, sometimes that comes slowly and in small steps but its all good. As human beings we tend to want to fly before we can walk, but that rarely happens to us from a spiritual perspective. In reality, more often our spiritual progress comes in one tiny baby step after another and “layer by layer” as we grow into the image of Jesus. The only way to develop and maintain spiritual strength is to depend entirely on the power of God’s Spirit at work in our lives. So may you rest in the promises of God and trust Him only knowing that our Christian growth ultimately depends upon God’s work in and through us.


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