Pete Kuiper
Pete Kuiper

Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them” (NKJV). The word “workmanship,” from the Greek word poiema, is often translated as “masterpiece.”

Many famous artists were not widely recognized during their lifetime, and so lived in poverty. Because of the expense of canvas, it was a common practice to reuse a canvas by “overpainting” previous works. Experts estimate that one-third of Vincent Van Gogh’s early paintings conceal other compositions underneath them. Imagine what the value of those hidden paintings would be if they could be successfully restored!

I wonder how many priceless masterpieces have been hidden to the world because of overpainting.

Scripture says I am already His masterpiece, but I often think about how many layers of paint are obscuring that masterpiece. Every time I have tried to create my own identity, I overpainted. Each time I felt defined by my failures, or by an abusive past, or by what was said or done to me, more layers of paint were added, further obscuring the masterpiece underneath.

What if I viewed sanctification as simply asking God: “Would You remove all the paint that is not Yours? Would You restore me to the original masterpiece You created me to be in Christ Jesus?”

Reflect + Pray

1. What do you struggle with, even though you know it’s theologically true? Do you really believe you are God’s masterpiece? Ask God for assurance.

2. How do you “overpaint” things? What do you feel defined by that you’d like to change? Ask the Lord to reveal weak areas and to remove those layers of paint you have applied yourself.

3. Pray: Lord, continue Your restoration process in my life, and let me truly see others and myself as Your priceless masterpieces.

4. Pray for our country, government and all those serving as we remember 9/11 this week; ask God for protection, wisdom and guidance for all.

Share your thoughts. See comments below, and add your own.

is a licensed clinical social worker, and is the co-founder of CrossRoads Counseling of the Rockies in Buena Vista, Colo.


  1. Greater is him,that’s in me, that’s the workmanship in us, will work wonderfully on us.
    Eph 2:10, NKJV.

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