8 God saved you by his grace when you believed.
And you can't take credit for this;
it is a gift from God.
9 Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done,
so none of us can boast about it.
10 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.
"We are God's masterpiece."
That's what Paul says here in his letter to the church of new believers in Ephesus.
There are two VERY large mirrors in our master bath at home.
Why do people do that?! The last place I need two BIG mirrors in is the bathroom!!!
And trust me, when I step out of the shower & look into those 2 big mirrors, I don't feel like a masterpiece!
None of us probably feel like a masterpiece - we may feel like a piece of something, but it's not a masterpiece!
But that is the way God thinks about us - the One who is infinitely holy, all knowing, all powerful - the God of the universes.
He gave us a brand new life through what Jesus did for us - brand new, the old is gone.
And Paul says because of the new life He gives us, we can be & do all the good things He planned a LONG time ago for us to be & do.
Does this blow your mind anymore than it does mine?!
Paul says God takes us out of the rot-gut lives we've created for ourselves through gobbs of sinning, cleans us up & makes our lives all new again, & then releases all the good stuff He planned for us that He thought up eons before we ever came onto the scene, & thinks of us as "a consummate example of skill or excellence of any kind" (that's how dictionary.com defines "masterpiece".)
All of that is the scandal of grace.
And it is a God-event found no where else in religion - God renewing & remaking someone so He can release the plans He made for them.
And no matter what we think of ourselves, or what the world thinks of us, or tell us they think of us, one fact remains...
God thinks of us as the showpiece of His creation.