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Created in Christ Jesus for Good Works
by Mark Perkins, elder on July 15th, 2011

My wife’s Grandfather is named Harland Cary or “Grandpa” to the many who know and love him. Grandpa is 94 years of age and has lived a life dedicated to the serving the Lord as a preacher, church planter and the founder of a small Bible College that trains pastors to reach the Hispanic people of Central America. Grandpa was also a faithful husband of 75+ years and a loving father and grandfather to 4 generations of children.

Sadly, Grandpa recently suffered a stroke and has experienced some partial paralysis and loss of sight and now lives in a nursing home. Rhoda and I recently made a trip down to Eagle Pass, TX to visit with Grandpa for what might be the last time we see him before he goes to be with the Lord. It was an emotional trip for us given the many memories we share of Grandpa and his spiritual legacy.

A year ago, Grandpa gave some of his personal belongings to his children and grandchildren. One of the most precious gifts we received was a straw cowboy work hat worn frequently by Grandpa. What makes this hat special is that it is stained with rings of sweat, which serve as a reminder to us of Grandpa’s hard work and dedication to serving our Lord.

I am reminded of a verse in Ephesians 2:10 that states, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” In general, the term good works refers to all righteous behavior that conforms to God’s revealed Word. As one commentary states, good works are an expression of gratitude flowing from the believer’s heart and have the glory of God as their object. Grandpa is a living example of a man who offered his life to the Lord and was committed to accomplishing the many good works God had sovereignly prepared beforehand for his life.

Do you and I realize we too are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works/righteous behavior? I had to stop for just a moment and dwell on the truths of this verse, that Almighty God, who created the heavens and the earth, has prepared in advance good works for you and for me with a desire that we would walk in them. I had to ask myself, how am I doing? I am thankful that in our family, Grandpa went before us to set an example.

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