I listen to young teens ruminating about the great harvest of apples, nests in the trees, apples of “no worth” purposefully left behind for squirrels and crows, how to place the stem end on the peeler….
I wonder if they are deaf to their own words. Words sometimes holding shame: should, have to, ought to. The same words my brother, sister, and I used to overpower each other. And how old were we before outgrowing them? Some never outgrow such deeply planted words, beating themselves up with them all of their lives. A death-squeeze to one who grows up feeling unlovable.
Can we hear Jesus saying that we are lovable when we are busy telling ourselves how we are dumb, not okay, not good enough? I doubt it.
Where did these hissing self-lies come from? Lies that you have to do this or that to be good enough, lovable enough? No truth in them. Such lies can destroy, especially when they become mantras in heads of people.
Happily, the scriptures tell us plainly to please God, not man. First Commandment. (Exodus 20: 1–6) A gold nugget here, if we choose to pick it up.
The teen years are the identity years. Blessed are those who figure it out during those short seven years. Status and success pull many away from the truth. Later on, when people admit they are unhappy, they may search scriptures to learn who they are in Christ.
When Adam and Eve messed up by disobeying God in the garden, all human beings inherited their sin and fell. (Genesis 1–3) A mess for 42 generations, until God sent Jesus to redeem His people.
What does this mean “to be redeemed”? We must believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of the living God and want a relationship with the Christ, grow intimacy in that relationship, be grateful He died for us (none of us deserved such goodness), and want to give up the old ways of living to live for Him. What a turn-around this offers! If we have that desire in our hearts and ask, Jesus accepts us and lives in us thereafter. That is what makes us new, worthy, lovable, beautiful in the eyes of God. (God sees us through Jesus who makes us perfect.)
A lot to grasp, especially for those unbelievers, thinking of themselves as unlovable. But for those who let go of that image of themselves (self-created), they can grab hold of the image of Jesus and claim His lineage, becoming a favored son or daughter of God.
A new beginning.
I was so touched this past week when I heard a testimony from a grandmother quoting her 19-year-old granddaughter. “Oh don’t worry about me. I am one of God’s favorites. I really am.”
Adam knew this. Jesus knew this. They were beloved and favored. And this 19-year-old in 2017 knows she is one of God’s favorites, too!
Imagine how different our world would be if all believers knew, really knew, we are sons and daughters of a King (1 John 3:2), that we are God’s favorites!
I invite you to say this truth to yourself over and over until it gets from your head to your heart and gut, until you know it is true. “I am one of God’s favorites.”
Then pass it on. . . .
P.S. You have my permission to comment on and share this post!
Photo by Pat Durmon near Norfork, Arkansas, August 2, 2017.