Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Let The Lower Lights Be Burning"1 (Lyrics)
Ecclesiastes 9:10a – Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might. (NIV)
In addition to quilting, I've also enjoyed trying a variety of crafts. Some become part of my hobbies, others are never tried again. The other day, I was feeling guilty about the time that I spend on these craft activities, until I started thinking about the numerous ways that God gifts people. A few days later, I found this Scripture:
Exodus 31:5 — He is skilled in engraving and mounting gemstones and in carving wood. He is a master at every craft! (NLT)
"A master at every craft" as a commendation from God in His Word — that seemed like a blessing from God to use the gifts and interests that He has given me! In Exodus, these skills were used to build the tabernacle. I use mine for gifts to friends and a variety of charities.
Other Scriptures confirm this:
- Exodus 35:35 – He has filled them with skill to do all kinds of work … all of them master craftsmen and designers. (NIV)
- 1 Chronicles 28:21a – The divisions of the priests and Levites are ready for all the work on the temple of God, and every willing man skilled in any craft will help you in all the work. (NIV)
- 1 Thessalonians 4:11 – Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands. (NIV)
I love that admonition to mind your own business — easier to do when my hands are busy with a craft or quilt project!
This use of craftsmen for the Lord's work has continued throughout history. Think of the marvellous cathedrals built in Europe with their carvings and stained-glass windows, or the paintings produced by the great masters, such as Da Vinci's The Last Supper. And how about the wonderful music produced through the ages that we still enjoy today, like my all-time favourite, The Messiah?
I've been privileged to visit Europe. Each visit leaves me in awe of those ancient craftsmen who used their God-given talents to create buildings, some of which took dozens of years to complete, without any of the modern-day tools that we so enjoy. They may not have considered themselves artists, but each brick, each marble column, each carefully carved block in the wall is a testament to the creative skill that God gave them.
Recently, I heard a speaker refer to Jesus as the Master Craftsman, always ready to give our lives a new design. What a marvellous thought! We can each create artistic designs in a variety of ways using talents that God gave us. In the same way, God can work on us to create a new and wonderful design. All we have to do is let Him.
Prayer: Lord, help us to use the talents that You have given us to glorify You and to serve others in whatever way we can. We want to bless those around us, while You work in our own lives to make us into beautiful examples of Your love and power. Amen.