Jesus welcomed the people, taught them about the Kingdom of God and healed those in need. Luke 9:11
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Seeds of the Kingdom

A Pearl of Great Price

by Julie Smith

Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.
Matthew 13:45-46, NIV

It was just before the final session of a creativity course at the Dutch Ellel Centre, and there was the usual buzz of excitement amongst guests and team at the end of one of these events. We were, as ever, amazed at the diversity, colours, texture and incredible extent of all that had been created in one place over one weekend. Everything that had poured out of us through pens and paint, wood and stone, fabric and fibres was now surrounding us, displayed and filling every bit of space in the conference hall.
As Dutch oohs and ahhs echoed amidst the excited chatter, we finally settled to our seats, and the Dutch team member sitting in the next chair, watching all the lovely, smiling faces, turned to me and said, “Do you know, the best masterpieces are sitting in the chairs!”

He was so right. As beautiful as all this wonderful workmanship we were admiring was, all that had flowed from the creative gifting our Creator God placed within each one of us when He made us in His own image, it was all secondary to His workmanship.
Ephesians 2:10 tells us that we are His workmanship. You and I were lovingly crafted and created by the Master Craftsman Himself. That’s something really worth thinking about. It’s especially worth thinking about if you struggle with criticising or disliking yourself. It’s just so easy to fall into the enemy’s cruel trap of spiralling down in a cycle of self-condemnation, wishing you were more like someone else, even going as far as hating yourself.

But, here we are told we are His workmanship. And then there is the story Jesus told, of a merchant searching for fine pearls (Matthew 13:44-45). When the merchant found one pearl of great value, he sold everything he had, and bought that pearl. Jesus is the merchant. You’re that beautiful pearl.

Just think … not only were you and I crafted by the Master Craftsman, but He sent His Son Jesus, who saw you and me as the ultimate treasure worth giving up everything for. Jesus came down from Heaven. He bled and died for us, so we could be forgiven and adopted into God’s own family. We were brought to God through Jesus.

This is how God sees us. If you struggle with your sense of personal worth and value, meditate on that very short story in Matthew 13, and ask Father God to give you a fresh, new perspective, to see yourself as He sees you – a beautiful pearl of great value crafted by Him, His most treasured masterpiece, once lost but now rescued and adopted as His own through Jesus.

Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that even before You made the world, You chose me in Christ to be holy and without fault in Your eyes. You know how I’ve struggled with my own sense of personal worth and value, and often turned against myself. Thank You that You understand the reasons for that. Father, I don’t want to live in that old orphan identity anymore. Please help me to receive the truth of Your Word, that You not only designed and handcrafted me, but You loved and chose me to be Your adopted child, through Jesus’s ultimate sacrifice. Please help me to really take on board the truth. This wasn’t something You had to do, but You wanted to do it, because of Your great love for me, and that it even gave You great pleasure. Thank You so much for Your incredible kindness and grace towards me. In Jesus’ precious name, Amen.

Julie Smith is married to Roger, and they have two grown up children. Having received deep healing in her own life, primarily through ministry at Ellel Grange and then attending the Modular School at Glyndley Manor, she went on to join the Glyndley associate ministry team. She now works part-time for Ellel Ministries and is an associate teacher with the ministry. She is passionate to see others restored and released into the abundant life Jesus won for us all.


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