By Skilled Design

Have you ever had one of those moments where you just look up at the sky and think, “What am I doing here?”

It can be a cry of frustration or annoyance when something seems so pointless, and yet the task at hand must be done. Maybe you’re thinking of something you’re currently going through, I for one think of those times as a child in school when I didn’t want to do my vocabulary. I would think, “What’s the point?” My poor mother had to deal with those tantrums and tears, and I’m sure she was asking the same question of God. Little did I know I would later become a writer.

Let’s take a moment to turn to Exodus 31. At this point in the Bible, the Lord has freed the Israelites from Egypt and He now gives instructions to Moses for building the tabernacle, the place of worship for His people. After listing the various areas and items for the tabernacle, the Lord says in Exodus 31: 2-3 “See, I have called by name Bezalel the son of Uri, son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with ability and intelligence, with knowledge and all craftsmanship” (ESV).  Then in verse 6, He says, “And I have given to all able men ability, that they may make all that I have commanded you.”

If you read through this book of Exodus, you will be caught up in the power of the Lord as He leads His people out of Egypt and into the wilderness. You will watch as they struggle against sin, as they rebel, and how the Lord redeems. But then there are these passages, long chapters of description for every minute detail of the tabernacle. If you’re like me, sometimes you wonder why all of these words are there. Is it just so we can picture what the tabernacle looked like? Or maybe, perhaps, it is to remind us that the God we serve is a God of detail.

You see, Bezalel didn’t come by these skills miraculously. He must have worked hard to receive them overtime. They came with effort, with repetition, with diligence, with discipline. Do you think that while he was working beneath the hand of Pharaoh that he wondered, “What’s the point of all of this?” Do you think perhaps he might have wondered why God had him in a place where he was skilled in craftsmanship, yet unable to make a living while in slavery? He was human, so I have to think that some part of him wondered why he worked so hard and for what purpose.

But God. God was developing and honing Bezalel’s skills. The Lord took that which was used to oppress His people to then build a place of worship for their Lord. Do you see what that means?

Maybe you’re in a stage of life right now where you’re wondering just what is going on. You feel certain that you’re in the right place, but the Lord hasn’t revealed the next step yet. Maybe you have a skill you’re crafting and honing at this moment that the Lord will use down the road. I’m not even sure of what God has for me in the coming days, but I know His glory is at the forefront of those skills He has given me.

What is it that you do well? Have you ever thought about it in the terms of glorifying the Lord?

Perhaps you’re one of those creative people who can script letters with an elegant hand. Or maybe you’re the kind of person who can make anyone feel welcome to sit beside you. Or are you a speaker? A teacher? A listener? The administrator? What is it? What is that thing that draws you in, the thing you naturally gravitate toward when others ask for help?

Most likely that skill was developed overtime. It was crafted and shaped in those moments when you wondered what is the point of persevering.

You see sometimes we see our skills and think, “It’s no big deal.” But it is when it is done for the glory of God.

Turn again with me to Exodus where we will see at the end of chapter 35 and the beginning of 36 that the Lord has given us our abilities.

Moses says to the Israelites, “[The Lord] has filled them with skill to do every sort of work done by an engraver or by a designer or by an embroiderer in blue and purple and scarlet yarns and fine twined linen, or by a weaver—by any sort of workman or skilled designer. Bezalel and Oholiab and every craftsman in whom the Lord has put skill and intelligence to know how to do any work in the construction of the sanctuary shall work in accordance with all that the Lord has commanded.” (Ex. 35:35-36:1, ESV).

That’s how we are to be. Tools in the hands of God for His glory.

The other day I walked by a puddle in the middle of a rainstorm. Ripples ran across it, and small splashes popped and dipped in a musical rhythm. There was no reflection to be seen. Yet, it was taking on more water, the edges becoming more clearly defined, and growing in size quickly, until suddenly it stopped raining. Then all grew calm and I could see a perfect reflection of light.

For today, take a moment to thank God while He hones your skills, and remember to use them to reflect His glory.

For with all we are, we are to worship Him.

Meaghan Rauscher
Women’s Ministry Assistant