Think of a masterpiece and you will undoubtedly think of the Mona Lisa, Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece of Italian Renaissance art.
He painted his oil on wood 2’6″ x 1’9″ between 1503-1506 and this most famous piece of art has been displayed in the Louvre Museum in Paris since 1797. I feel privileged to have viewed it twice. Plus I got to enjoy the 500-year da Vinci celebration when it was on display in Denver this past year.
Paul wrote in Eph. 2:10: “We are God’s masterpiece.”
The famous enigmatic lady was, not daVinci’s wife, but Lisa Gharardini, wife of Francesco del Giocondo, a Florentine silk merchant, who commissioned da Vinci to paint her. “Mona” is a contraction of the Italian word Madonna meaning “my lady.”
Each of us was created by God “in His image” (Gen. 1:26). The Master Potter knows just how to shape and mold us by our life experiences. [At this point, you’d find it inspiring to treat yourself to Shannon Wexelberg’s “Shades of You”].
God is a Master Blacksmith who holds His metal to the fire as it blazes red hot. How does He know when the time is just right to remove it from fiery trials? When He sees His reflection in it! [At this point, treat yourself to Shannon’s “Change Me” where she sings “Come now and cleanse me with fire … Come make me Your own”]
Here is why each of us is a greater masterpiece
by far than Leonardo da Vinci’s. He was an amazing man but no comparison to the Father and the Son of Man! And we are a real live subject—a real live son or daughter of God destined to be born into the Family and Kingdom of God.
Not a painting subject to vandalism and decay but a God Being who will live for eternity. Not a good work hanging on a wall but “created in Christ Jesus for good works (Eph. 2:10), which God prepared beforehand “to be our way of life” (New Revised Standard Version). God has a future planned with exciting projects where we will be commissioned by Him to create masterpieces!
The Mona Lisa is the highest insured painting ever at $100 million. Once we’ve repented, believed, been baptized, and had hands laid on us by a minister of God who asks that God grant us the Holy Spirit, then we have the down payment that we will be resurrected into the God Family at the return of Jesus Christ. We are “sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, [which] is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory” (Eph. 1:13-14). This is the highest assurance!
What price can you put on being a son or daughter of God? The pearl of great price!
Leonardo da Vinci created a visual representation of his idea of happiness suggested by the Italian word “giocondo” (the silk merchant’s name). God offers every son and daughter His nine fruits of the Holy Spirit, the second one being JOY. God’s JOY is so far above happiness which is based on the word happen. We can be joyful no matter what circumstances happen.
We will have “pleasures forevermore” (Psa. 16:11) in God’s Family and Kingdom.
Now that’s something to smile about!