I stood awkwardly amongst my peers, all in a row, gaze focused downward on the dewy grass of the ball field. 'Why do we have to play these games in school anyway,' I wonder, "and why can't the teacher just split us up into teams? I HATE this!' Feeling as if the whole world was starring at me and jeering, 'You're no good. Why would we choose you? We'll lose if you're on our team!' - my self esteem shrivels as each name is called that isn't mine. And as the group I stood amongst became smaller and smaller, the desperate pleas in my mind became louder and louder. 'Please pick me, please pick me. Please don't let me be the last chosen!"
In the world, this is how it most often works - people waiting, seeking, hoping to be chosen. Whether by classmates for a game as a child, or as an adult for an employer for a job. Whether to be a spouse, on a committee, or part of a ministry group. Whatever it may be, to be included in these "teams" we usually have to be chosen first. But not when it comes to God's Kingdom. Here we have already been chosen.
"For you are a people holy to the LORD your God. The LORD God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession." -Deuteronomy 7:6
In God, we don't have to wait anxiously shuffling our feet wondering, 'Will my name be called next? Will I make the team?' In God, we don't have to be "good" enough to be included.
For IN GOD we are chosen first. IN GOD there is no last. IN GOD we are celebrated, honored, treasured.
Can you relate to the story on the ball field? Have you been desperately pleading 'pick me, pick me' in some area of your life? Are you struggling with hurt feelings of inadequacy due to being chosen last or maybe not at all by the things and people of the world? If so, I encourage you to shift your gaze up. Lock it on our Lord. Choose to listen to God's Word over the world by remembering this truth that is found there:
The best captain in the world has Already Chosen YOU to be on His team!
Heavenly Father, we thank you that you love us so much that you would not have us go a single day of our lives un-chosen by you. That you predestined us to be your children. Help us to remember your Word when we are feeling the hurt of rejection in this world and help us to share your truth with others who are waiting, seeking, and hoping to be chosen - to belong. In Jesus name, Amen.
"For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will - to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves." -Ephesians 1:4-6
Read: Psalm 33:12, John 15:16 & 19, 2 Thessalonians 2:13, & 1 Peter 2:9
Reflect: How does it make you feel when you are not chosen for/by something/someone in this world? How do you feel when you read God's Word on being chosen?
Respond: Thousands of people all over the world, people that you are surrounded with on a daily basis, are struggling with not feeling included, not being chosen by the world. Will you answer the call of your name by God - will you share His truth, His love, His acceptance with the hurting and the lost? What's one thing you can do today to bring them His message?