Best of Daily Reflections: When God First Thought of You
For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.
I thought about my son, Nathan, before he was born. I also prayed for him well before I knew that "he" was a "him." I know many parents-to-be who pray for their future children. In my case, thinking and praying about my "child-yet-to-be-named" were made even more intense by the fact that my wife and I did not have an easy time conceiving Nathan. After years of disappointment, we endured many months of infertility treatments. I remember often crying out to God for the blessing of a child, long before Linda's pregnancy test first came back positive.
Ephesians 1:4 reveals that God thought of you before you were conceived. Actually, this verse suggests that God thought of you even before the creation of the world. And he didn't just think about you, but also he chose you in Christ to be holy and blameless in his sight. This is a mind-blowing, heart-transforming truth, don't you think?
Now, you probably know that the interpretation of Ephesians 1:4 and similar verses varies widely among Christians. Some emphasize God's election in a way that minimizes human freedom and responsibility. Others find ways to talk about God's choice in a manner that makes it dependent in some way upon our faith. Others find ways to affirm both God's choice and human choice.
As you might imagine, I'm not going to engage in a debate about election in this short reflection. Rather, I want to underscore the marvelous good news of Ephesians 1:4. However you work out the details, the fact remains that God thought of you and chose you before he created the world. You are that important to him. Even as my son means the world to me, so you mean the world to God. Actually, it might be better to say you mean the universe to God.
As you go through life today, let me encourage you to keep in mind the fact that God keeps you in mind. He has been thinking of you ever since the beginning of time, and even before that.
QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: What helps you to believe that you matter to God? How might your life be different if you truly believed that God thought of you before he created the universe?
PRAYER: O God, I am blown away by the truth of this verse. My mind struggles to comprehend how much I mean to you. Help me to believe this truth!
Thank you, dear Lord, not only for thinking of me before the creation of the world, but also for choosing me in Christ. Thank you for wanting me to belong to you and to be dedicated to your purposes.
Help me to live this day–and every day–in the security, humility, and encouragement of your choice. Amen.