I have filled him with the Spirit of God, giving him great wisdom, ability, and expertise in all kinds of crafts. He is a master craftsman, an expert in working with gold, silver, and bronze. He is skilled in engraving and mounting gemstones and in carving wood. He is a master at every craft.
Relate: What are some of your earliest memories? For those of you who have grown up going to church, synagogue, or mosque, what are some of your earliest memories of your time in those buildings? The earliest church memories I have with any consistency was our church in downtown Syracuse, NY. We met in a community hall called the Echo building. I tried to look it up online and the building is now called the Westcott Community Center. The building began its life as an old fire hall and when we were there they still had the pole the firemen would have used to quickly get to their trucks. Beyond that one quirk, the building was pretty much one large open space both in the downstairs and the up. It was about as opposite from “fancy” as you can get. Even worse, since the building was both inexpensive and very close to Syracuse University so it was occasionally rented out on Saturdays for Frat parties and the like. So some Sunday mornings we would be airing out the smell of stale alcohol while cleaning up the puke left in the bathrooms. We did church there, but it certainly was not conducive to what most would consider a church environment.
To this day, I still have this inner tendency to associate plain and simple with “godly” and beautiful, expensive, and extravagant with “wasteful” when it comes to church buildings and worship environments. While I recognize the beauty of something like the Sistine Chapel or like Notre Dame, there is a part of me who is thinking, “just think of how much money that went into facilities instead of missions.” I realize that this is a personal hangup and I am getting over it, but part of me doesn’t really want to… Until I read verses like these.
React: That church I grew up in was an Assemblies of God church. I was born and bred Pentecostal. I still am. So being “filled with the Spirit” is a phrase I am very familiar with. But I don’t think I ever heard until college the fact that the very first person in the Bible of whom it is said that they are “filled with the Spirit” is Bezalel. This guy was an artist. He was a craftsman. Bezalel was the ancient Hebrew equivalent of Michelangelo. And the Tabernacle is the early equivalent of a portable Sistine Chapel. Exodus goes chapter after chapter detailing the exact specifics for the creation of this very first “house of God.” And Bezalel was filled with the Holy Spirit for the specific task of making this house beautiful. There is something to be said for the investment of time and excellence into creating a beautiful space where people can worship. I might not always be for it, but God certainly is. God is an artist. He is a craftsman. And those who nurture and use such talents for His glory are an essential part of the body of believers.
Help me to better recognize the talent and the giftings of those who are created to be creators. Give me a deeper appreciation for the arts and those who use them for Your glory. They are gifted by You for a purpose. I pray that the time and work and love that they invest into creating something that would reflect Your glory would be effective in drawing others ever closer to who You are.
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To read previous years devotionals taken from the February 10th please click below: