Tag Archives: process

His Workmanship | Bible Gleanings – October 22-23, 2022

Repairing the rusting russet-colored sedan seemed like a waste of time to me. If you searched for “clunker” in Webster’s Dictionary, you’d see a picture of this car. It was in terrible shape: the tires were ashy from wear, the paint was chipped from weather, and the engine sputtered from sitting idle for so long. Despite its sorry state, it was my father’s restoration project for a few weeks. He took a hunk of junk, and burned time, broke sweat, and battered tools to make it run like new. 

Likewise, you are the heavenly Father’s “restoration project” if you have been saved by grace. The Scripture says, “For we are His workmanship” (Eph. 2:10a). The Lord bought you from sin’s junkyard, and He is always working on you to make you run like new (cf. Eph. 4:22-24; Col. 3:9-10). You are in His workshop of sanctification, but not for self-improvement. God is working on you to make you more like Christ: “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit” (2 Cor. 3:18). 

Like any good mechanic, the Father uses many tools to fix you up. The Bible is a hammer that God uses to flatten out the dents in your theology (Jer. 23:29). The local church is the place where God gives you a weekly “engine tune up” in order to run effectively for Him throughout the week. Trials and tribulations are the buff pads God uses to polish the scuffs on your faith (James 1:2-4). And prayer is the “jump” that cranks your engine for righteous living, since it is through prayer that we receive God’s own power to obey Him (James 5:16).

God isn’t finished with you yet, but He will finish what He started. The Scripture assures us, “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1:6). Until then, we must humbly submit to His means and methods of making us what we ought to be. And, we may exuberantly resound the words of He’s Still Workin’ on Me, the gospel classic which says: 

“He’s still workin’ on me

To make me what I ought to be;

It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars,

The sun and the earth and Jupiter and Mars.

How loving and patient He must be!

He’s still workin’ on me!”

Bible Gleanings is a widely-read weekend devotional column, written for the Murray Ledger & Times in Calloway County, Kentucky. 

Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their three dogs, Susie (Jack Russell), Aries (English Shepherd), and Dot (Bluetick Beagle).

The Potter | Bible Gleanings – June 25-26, 2022

The coffee mug in your cabinet was not always shiny and smooth. It began as a wet lump of shapeless mud that was formed and fashioned into a cup. It was held in the hands of a proficient potter before it held your morning joe. He carefully sculpted the clay until it was just right. And because of his handiwork, the once-useless and deformed clay was transformed into something meaningful and beautiful. 

To achieve the desired shape, the potter adds and takes away from the clay chunk at times. The things it doesn’t need are removed, and the things it does need are added. The potter also spins his wheel at various speeds to get the splodge of dirt precisely perfect. Finally, the clay is polished and perfected by being heated in a fiery kiln. The clay needs time, fire, and the wisdom of a potter to become useful—there is no product without the process. 

And such is the precious metaphor in the Scripture describing the work that God is always doing within His children. “But now,” said Isaiah, “O LORD, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand” (Isaiah 64:8). The Potter shapes His people on the wheel of sanctification, molding them into vessels that are “useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work” (2 Timothy 2:21). He gives His saints what they need for the process of maturation to Christlikeness. Sometimes, He pinches off the besetting ways of the old life, and other times, He adds the water of His word to smooth away imperfections.

But the process cannot be rushed. It takes time to be shaped into a God-pleasing vessel. As the Scripture says, “He has made everything beautiful in its time” (Ecclesiastes 3:11). The fiery furnace of tribulation is also required to make one a beautiful masterpiece in God’s sight (1 Peter 1:6-7). The best thing believers can do is trust the wisdom of the Potter and, with humble submission, let Him work. “Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth. Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou? or thy work, He hath no hands?” (Isaiah 45:9)

Bible Gleanings is a widely-read weekend devotional column, written for the Murray Ledger & Times in Calloway County, Kentucky. 

Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their three dogs, Susie (Jack Russell), Aries (English Shepherd), and Dot (Bluetick Beagle).