For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.Ephesians 2:8-10 (NIV)
By nature, humans are wired for work. God has given you capacity to create and initiate.
Things get twisted, though, when we start to live for ourselves and our own desires, thinking we’re in charge of the universe.
Did you notice the different uses of “work” in today’s passage?
The world (and religion) is quick to tell us how to act and what works we must accomplish to be accepted, approved, and even saved. So we work, work, work in an effort to earn our keep.
But here’s the thing: The work is finished. (John 19:30)
Jesus on the cross accomplished for you what you could never earn for yourself: forgiveness, eternal life, access to God’s throne of grace.
The best part? When you exchange your self-sufficiency for surrender to Christ, you’re adopted as God’s child, sealed by his Spirit, and made an integral member of his church, the body of Christ.
In Christ, you’re now supernaturally empowered to do good works that God prepared before the foundation of the world.
He knit you together in your mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13). You’re created in his image (Genesis 1:27), a masterful work of art, destined for good works.
When you channel your human capacity (e.g., praying, reading Scripture, and practicing other spiritual disciplines) and pair it with the Spirit’s power, Jesus will change you from the inside out, allowing you to be who God created you to be and do what he created you to do.
There’s no better way to live, and it’s available to anyone, including you.
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