Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Day of Praise

Wed, 05/02/18, Easter Day #32, "Day of Praise"

1 Peter 2:9 - "But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light."

I remember it like it was yesterday. I was standing next to my dad, standing on my tip-toes, trying to peer through the window. I asked him to pick me up, ya know, so I could see 'em better. I mean, I was only three.

We had put a baby into the pot. So we got to pick a baby out of the pot. It was so exciting because there was a whole big room full of babies to choose from!

Of course, that was not how it really worked. And I have no idea where I got the notion that if your mom has a baby and puts it in the pot, then you get to choose anyone you want out of the pot.

Bottom line, I'm glad we chose the one that my mom gave birth to, Cheryl Dianne DeGreen. With the exception of the annual Halloween masks scare, my little sister and I have gotten along famously to this day. So, I'm really, really glad that we chose her.

And in the same way, so is the Lord. The Lord is thrilled that He chose you. That's what God's talking about in today's Bible verse from 1 Peter 2:9 where God says, "But you are a chosen race." Yep! If you have a living, hope-filled faith in Jesus Christ, then it's totally because God chose you.

As Lutherans, we do not believe that unbelievers are not chosen by God; we just believe that they just don't know that they're chosen by God, and they won't know they're chosen by God until they surrender to the movements of the Holy Spirit in their heart.

But today the focus is on the fact that you are specially chosen by God, so God tells us more in the verse of what that means. It means you're in a "royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession." And you're a part of such a distinguished group for a purpose, namely, so "that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light."

Wow! In the spirit of what Paul said to Timothy, do not let anyone look down on you! Oh, yes, someone may look down on you today, but you just remember your credentials: chosen by God, royalty, holy, God's own. And you remember your purpose: you are here to tell the excellencies and the greatness of God and how he changed your life! He brought you out of the hopelessness and darkness and loneliness of life when you were estranged from him, and he brought you into a new life, filled with hope and a future and a purpose and sweet fellowship with God through a faith that he gave us, faith in Jesus Christ!

So y'all have what Chosen People have! Have a great day! May the God of peace be so near you and in you that you can taste him. And may you enjoy telling others of Him too!

Praise God!

Pastor Chris 
"The gospel is the story of Jesus [what God's only Son has done for us that we can't do for ourselves], spoken as a promise." - Robert Jenson

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