“I am not what I ought to be, I am not what I want to be, I am not what I hope to be; but still I am not what I once used to be, and by the grace of God I am what I am.” – John Newton
Early in my walk with Christ, as I began to understand what it really meant to know Him and follow Him, I had the chance to hear Elisabeth Elliot speak. Her words have come to my mind almost daily since then.
Mrs. Elliot spoke about how God shapes us to make us more like Christ. She said that if you asked Michaelangelo how he made his masterpiece David, he would tell you that he took a block of marble and knocked off what didn’t look like David. This would involve hammer blows, and the chippings of the chisel and the raspings of the file. Sometimes with great force, and sometimes with gentle correction, he shaped that marble into a masterpiece. So it is with us, as God shapes us. He shapes each of us to make us more like Christ.
I was talking with a sweet friend yesterday about our old college days… and how thankfully the Lord has grown us both in so many ways since then. It is sometimes painful and hilarious to think of who I was back then. I wonder- in twenty years from now, will I look back on these days of my life and find them painful and hilarious? Yes, probably so. Because I know that God will continue to shape and mold me until I’m just how He wants me to be.
He’ll keep those tools out and keep knocking off what doesn’t look like Jesus. May it be so, Lord. May it be so.
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. ~Ephesians 2:10