“Marginalized and discarded? Others may think so. You may think so. But God sees in you a masterpiece about to happen.”- Max Lucado, Grace
“Timothy, my dear son, be strong through the grace that God gives us in Christ Jesus. You have heard me teach things that have been confirmed by many reliable witnesses. Now teach these truths to other trustworthy people who will be able to pass them on to others.”- 2 Timothy 2:1-2 (NLT)
An old brown suitcase once belonging to my parents sits atop a wicker case in the corner of my Man Cave. Its contents include two hand puppets, my Cub Scout shirt, and a white knitted baby sweater. Plus two academic memories from Mr. Trautsch’s eighth-grade class at Timothy Lutheran – my history and literature notebooks.
During the mid-1960s, Mr. Harold Trautsch stood alone as a fashion innovator. He loved dress shirts and ties (with tie pin) as long as they didn’t contain the color white. And, his creative use of notebooks provided a solid foundation for my journey into the Lutheran high school unknown. For example, in my history notebook I defined vocabulary terms and answered comprehension questions for each chapter. The notebook also held opinion pieces such as “A Lutheran Look at Public Education.”
And for literature, Mr. Trautsch assigned each student an author (me- Walt Whitman) to research and present to the class. We took notes on the other authors and completed a major book report. I wrote about the original Ferris wheel at the Columbian Exposition in Chicago (1892-1893).
Writing in Given: The Forgotten Meaning and Practice of Blessing (2019), Tina Boesch observes that any jolt into the unknown feels deeply disconcerting, especially when foreignness becomes a way of life. Because you lose a sense of who you are. As a result, we yearn to know specific details about our destination. Yet, as with Abram, God’s call isn’t primarily about a destination. Rather, it’s about the company – walking from the known to the unknown with God, who leads the way. God sees you as a masterpiece about to happen.
Most noteworthy, God’s call to Abram fundamentally involves a call to let go of an identity constructed by culture and society. In the process, God calls Abram to find his true identiy in Him. Furthermore, Tina stresses, God extends this calling to us. However, if we cling to our worldly treasures and loyalties, they begin to possess us. Thus, we’re no longer free to live a life given to God. Instead, we need to see the call to let go as a threshold that leads into what Tina describes as the exhilarating freedom to follow.
Since God sees in you a masterpiece about to happen, His hand guides you, wraps around you, holds you fast, and cradles you safe. And as you partake of God’s blessing, you become a blessing bearer to others as you live as God’s child. Max Lucado offers these word of support:
“To live as God’s child is to know, at this very instant, that you are loved by your Maker . . . because he wants to be your Father. Nothing more. . . . You can no more make him want you than you can convince him to abandon you. The adoption is irreversible. You have a place at his table.”