The Upper Room devotional reflection for Tuesday, May 17, 2022 comes to us from Rhae Ann Ongstad of Florida
1 See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2 Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 3 All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. 1 John 3:1-3 NIV
My three-year-old son, Henrik, was clearly upset as he walked toward me in the church hallway. When I asked him what was wrong, he replied, “Someone called me a sweetie pie, but I’m not a pie! I am Henrik!” I tried to hide the smile on my face so that he wouldn’t think I was laughing at him, then I did my best to explain to him what a “term of endearment” was. Henrik loved his name and didn’t want anyone to call him anything but that. I walked away thinking about how often we forget what our “names” are.
As we go throughout our day, words get tacked onto us – unloved, dumb, not enough, not attractive, weak, loser. Such labels can cause us to forget who God says we are.
God says we are chosen, loved, pure, free, worthy, strong, victorious, purposed, valuable. Those are just a few of the words our heavenly Father speaks over us. First Peter 2:9 says, “You are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession.” Like Henrik did, remember who you are in Christ and boldly declare and live in that identity today!
God’s love for all people calls us to remember that each of us is “God’s special possession”. This love from God calls us to be confident as followers of Christ and leaders who serve God’s purposes in the world we have been given.
In order to live with that confidence, we have to ignore the voices in our own heads and from others – those voices that tell us that we are not “worthy” -- not “good enough”. We must remember that God created us to be holy, strong, and worthy. Knowing that, we can then make Christ known through our behavior and actions.
Heavenly Father, help us to ignore the hurtful names others may call us. Teach us to declare your truths, believing what your word says about who we are in Christ. Amen.
--Rhae Ann Ongstad
To Embrace my identity in Christ
Thought for the Day:
Today I will walk confidently because of who I am in Christ.
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
1 Peter 2:9 (NIV)