Wednesday, November 11, 2020

DeerGrove Weekly Devotional

By Pastor Rick Fisk

Remember the dread of picking teams? In gym class, or a sandlot baseball game, or with the kids in the neighborhood… Publicly picking teams seems to have brought more agony than excitement for all but perhaps the two people who were selected to function as “captains.” 

Today, as adults, we might see that early insecurity as just a lack of maturity. But before you go too far down that path, let me challenge you. Don’t you, as an adult, still want to be chosen? It feels good to be promoted, to be recognized for extra effort, to be called out for a successful project. On a very personal level it also feels good to be chosen because of who we are, to be selected as a friend, or perhaps a spouse. 

Let me change the direction of this thought for just a moment, with the promise to come back to being chosen. 

I want to share something with you about myself. I love it when the Holy Spirit enlightens me with a deeper understanding in a topic about which I already some basic knowledge. It is sort of like finding the golden ticket inside your chocolate bar. This happened recently when I was reading about Adam and Eve’s sin against God. I knew the basic knowledge that even before Adam and Eve sinned, God had made provision, through Jesus Christ, for humankind’s redemption. What I didn’t realize is that God had made that provision before He even gave thought to creating the world and all that is in it.

I was reading (with Barbara) Ephesians 1:4-5 when that enlightenment dawned on me: 

Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.” (NLT)

Perhaps eons before God created Adam and Eve, he realized that bringing “man” into existence was going to cost him his Son. Before he created the world, God had counted the costs and decided it was worth it. I was aware that God knew we would need to be redeemed before he created us, that was no surprise. What was a surprise was how central the creation of “man” was to God’s purpose. And how much pleasure it brought him, in spite of the pain!

I said to Barbara, “Do you realize the magnitude of God creating man in regard to all of the other creation? He chose us, He chose us!”

So, I’m keeping my promise and taking you back to the discussion of being chosen. Do you realize that before God made the world, He chose you? Before he chose to create the sun and the moon, God knew you and chose to love you. That is the foundation of your identity. 

Nobody wants to be chosen last, but you have never been last in God’s thoughts. You have always been first on his mind. He chose you!