Watching the video, I noticed as the crowd slowly begins to back away from the boy, one elderly woman quickly appears from the back of the crowd. She steps next to the boy and seems to scrutinize the painting and then the boy. She scans the painting, scans the boy… painting… boy. She never appears to speak, but her body language does. Within minutes, another woman approaches the boy, places her hand gently on his shoulder, turns him and leads him off. This walk might have been the longest walk of the poor boy’s life. Can you imagine how he must have felt? While surrounded by others, a misstep triggered a stumble that damaged a million dollar work of art. My, oh, my! How would you feel if you had to go home and explain this to mom and dad? How would you respond, as a parent, after asking your child, “How was your field trip to the museum today?”, hearing the event of the day? Yikes!
A few weeks ago, I was reading in Ephesians and was reminded that museums and galleries aren’t the sole locations of masterpieces. Paul wrote, “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). The Amplified Bible reads, “For we are His workmanship [His own master work, a work of art].” The Master Himself created us, by His own hand, to be a work of art, walking by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7), as we pursue His plans and purposes for our lives.
What a great reminder that God is a masterpiece maker. This revelation made me regret the times I’ve become offended and hurt over being called a “piece of work.” It’s true—I am one—we all are. Then, as I thought about it more, I began to feel remorse for those who, like the boy, have had missteps that led to a fall, which caused damage to one of God’s masterpieces. I’ve stumbled and tripped many times. Haven’t we all had our moments?
Within the body of Christ, there have been those who stumbled into sin, tripped over temptation and suffered damage by deception. Nowadays, thanks to social media, anyone who stumbles can be sure a crowd will surround them, offering similar reactions to those around the boy in the museum.
- A search of the crowd might reveal those who once stood close by are now stunned and silent; taking a step back, they avoid eye contact and refuse involvement. They might relate to Peter who, when pressed, backed away, denying he had any association whatsoever with Jesus.
- There are others who, like the elderly woman, seem to come out of nowhere. They step to the front of the crowd to make their disapproval known. Some may not say one word; but when body language speaks, words aren’t necessary. Offering no help, they just want the offender to know they are aware and watching. They might relate to the Pharisees who stood behind the crowds as Jesus taught and then shot out, front and center, when they didn’t like what they heard. Or saw.
- There are those, however, who are willing to walk up to the fallen and place their hand gently on a shoulder. Turning the offender, they walk together in a new direction. It might be a hard walk, but one can endure even the most difficult walks when you have someone beside you. I imagine this might resemble what Jesus did in those moments we read of in the Gospels when “…Jesus healed many people of sicknesses and infirmities and evil spirits; and He gave [the gracious gift of] sight to many who were blind” (Luke 7:21 AMP).
The online article sharing the video went on to say, “Once these works are damaged, they are permanently damaged.” However, the good news for the boy, and his parents, is that the masterpiece painting was insured. Whew! I bet this family breathed a little easier after hearing that news. This is where God’s masterpieces differ from those hanging on a museum wall; you won’t hear Him say, “Once damaged, always damaged.” Instead He said, “…. your light will break out like the dawn, and your healing (restoration, new life) will quickly spring forth; Your righteousness will go before you [leading you to peace and prosperity], The glory of the Lord will be your rear guard. “Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and He will say, ‘Here I am’” (Isaiah 58:8-9a AMP).
I don’t know if you are a masterpiece that has been damaged by someone who tripped and fell, or maybe you were the one who did the falling. I do know that Jesus is the best insurance coverage you can get. Don’t discard yourself, or others, believing you are beyond repair. That is simply not true. Call to Him and He will answer.
“Heal me, O Lord, and I will be healed; Save me and I will be saved…” (Jeremiah17:14 AMP).
“I said, Lord, be merciful and gracious to me; heal my inner self, for I have sinned against You” (Psalm 41:4 AMP).
You are His masterpiece, created to do good works for His glory. Remember- you, my friend, are a piece of work! Be You...