“You were the weakest of all nations, but the LORD chose you because he loves you and because he had made a promise to your ancestors. Then with his mighty arm, he rescued you from the king of Egypt, who had made you his slaves”
Deuteronomy 7:7-8, Contemporary English Version
We are taught the need for perfection from a very early age. You have to be the best, because the best are the ones that are chosen. Whether it’s not being the last picked for a pick-up game, or getting to date that guy (who in turn is doing two a days to get on the team), or not getting to date that guy because you have to study so you can get into that college, so you can get that job. In the secular world, the best are the ones that are picked.
But Abba makes it clear that the reason that He chooses us is not because we are the best. Yes, he wants our best, He wants our whole souled devotion to Him and our love, but not because we are the best. Not because we dress the best, give the best offerings, have more tithes to offer, are the most ‘righteous’, are top orators, help the most people or anything like that.
We are chosen because we are loved by Him. Because He made a promise that He would love us even though we are not the best, we are broken and undeserving. John tells us that “In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation [appeasement] for our sins” (1 John 4:10, ESV).
We are not capable of giving Him the love, devotion, worship, and commitment that He deserves. And you know what? He knows that. And He still loves us. He gave Jesus and the Cross (grace) to fill in the gap between what He deserves and what we can give. Grace is the bridge that connects our lacking, broken lives and spirit to a loving, long suffering, and just Father who wants nothing more than for us to embrace Him the way He embraces us.
This is a view that was very different than the one that I was raised with. We don’t have to stand in fear that we are not ‘righteous’, but we can have full faith that He spends every minute, every second, thinking of us and loving us, even though (and even because) we are weak.
Thanks be to God.