It is finished! What’s finished? Sin is finished. You mean we can indulge in all kinds of base and anti-social behaviour and know we won’t go to hell? On the other hand, we can strip off anything that slows us down…especially those sins that wrap themselves tightly around our feet and trip us up…’ (Hebrews 12: 1-2) and believe and accept that Jesus killed off sin on the cross, giving the believers a new start.
I am currently hand embroidering a linen table cloth. The pattern comprises twelve peacocks forming a ring in a stylized design. The embroidery is call Richelieu because much of the pattern is worked in bars and later the linen is cut away just leaving the bars.
I have stitched at it every evening and have completed eight birds. I began the project in February 2018 when I traced the pattern and ironed it on to the linen and sewed the first stitches. I estimate it will be June 2019 when I say, ‘It is finished!’
I have kept working on the cloth constantly – two hours every evening. When I first became a Christian I started working on being good. Remaking myself to please God, so I believed. After failing very badly I gave up trying to be good, admitted it couldn’t be done. God, then, stepped in and revealed he had done it all for me. When I had become a Christian, Jesus filled me with himself. When I accept him he lives through me. That is why it is not up to me to struggle to live the Christian life. My part today is to believe Jesus as Saviour and receive from him God’s abundant favour and the gift of goodness.
Jesus famous last words while hanging on the cross were, ‘It is finished!’ He meant he had taken our place, replacing our self-effort with his life indwelling us. Jesus has made us as perfect as he is perfect in spirit. We no longer have to struggle with sin.
Sin is not the issue any longer. Rejecting the finished work of Jesus is the issue. Do we accept Jesus, trust him with our life? or do we trust ourselves and our ability to be good and please God.
The plan is to work at the cloth until it is finished. It is my greatest piece of embroidery, my ultimate work of art, my ‘piéce de résistance’. For Jesus, hanging on the cross was his greatest moment. He saved the world all we have to do is believe and accept him as Saviour and receive from him God’s abundant favour. However, I cannot make me in the same way as the cloth. Only Jesus can renew me. I have accepted Jesus, ‘I am a new person,’ ‘It is no longer I that lives but Christ Jesus in me.’(Galatians 2:20. What appears to have been lost in one sense is more than gained in another. Jesus has given me ‘more than we ever dared to ask or even dream of – infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts or hopes.’ (Ephesians 3: 20)