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Your Brilliance Factor

December 17, 2018

“For wisdom is more precious than rubies, and nothing you desire can compare with her.” Proverbs 8:11

Adrian Grasselly was used to working with precious material. As an expert diamond cutter, he was akin to Michelangelo who could look at a slab of marble and see the statue that was trapped inside. And so, in 1944, when Grasselly began working on that one particular diamond, he studied it for two full months before touching it. Why? Because it was the Liberator diamond—a 155-carat rock worth millions. Because of the magnitude of the treasure, Grasselly spent time thinking through every move in his approach to refining the stone. One wrong move would have instantly ruined the potential of that great rock.

Your life and mine are a lot like that stone. We’re all “diamonds in the rough” with great potential. And just like Grasselly, who deliberated for 60 days before touching the diamond, we need to think long and hard about a strategy for the way we live our lives. One choice at a time, you and I determine our brilliance factor for Jesus.

Let’s think of our brilliance factor as the sum of the good decisions we make, minus the bad ones. The greater the number of wise choices, the greater our ability to radiate the spectacular facets of Christ’s wisdom and character. Let’s face it. We’re all just a few bad moves away from flawing the brilliance of His glory in us. Choices about what we say, how we respond to trouble, how we treat those who don’t treat us well, what we choose to watch, and how we spend our money are all the strokes of the chisel against the diamond in our hearts.

So, how do we know what the downstrokes look like—the strokes that chisel away the rough edges and move us toward brilliance? The transforming work of God in our lives begins when we are willing to live by His wisdom and not our own. Wisdom is seeing all of life from God’s point of view. Since He is perfect wisdom, aligning my choices with His perspective brings the brilliance of His glory to the surface of all my activities and attitudes. Loving my enemies, serving the needs of others, forgiving, being generous, and caring for the needy and the poor are among the transforming downstrokes of His wisdom.

A life lived to reveal the brilliance of His glory happens one choice at a time. And you’ll know that you are on the right track when at the verge of every choice, you check in with God to get His perspective and then proceed to chisel away the rough edges according to what is truly wise.

I love what the Bible says in the book of Proverbs: Wisdom “is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her” (Proverbs 3:15). When you start living by the precious wisdom of God, there is indeed nothing that can compare! His wisdom will chip away the grit and grime from your life and begin the process of changing you into a priceless gem that radiates His spectacular glory—which, by the way, is your brilliance factor.


  • Read one chapter in the book of Proverbs each day for the month of January. As you read, make a list of important facts about wisdom.
  • Write down your strategy for increasing your “brilliance factor” this year. Commit to reviewing and using this strategy before making life choices throughout the year.
  • Spend an hour in solitude and reflect on the choices you’ve made over the past year. Ask God to help you be honest before Him as you assess how many choices have been wise ones.
  • Is there a specific area in your life where you continually make unwise choices? Consider where these choices will lead you. Find an accountability partner to help you make wise choices in this area.