We are born, the king or queen of our kingdom of one. Our only question is, Who Am I? We demand to be fed and made comfortable 24/7. Life goes on for us…until one day we see the hand that feeds us, the same hand that loves us also disciplines us. And we are astonished when the usual cries and our built-in cuteness will persuade this other person in our kingdom to do our bidding in all things.
Yes, we are born with a sense of entitlement that sometimes never disappears. Our parents answered the question, Who Am I as they learned to care for the family. They live their lives answering the much more important question in the world. An eternal question, that makes a forever difference, as old as time. It is a question each of us must answer. They ask and search for the answer to the question, Who is God?
Not long ago, my cousin, who knew me when as described her assessment of me in glowing terms. I was astonished. In the days when my kingdom was small, I didn’t know how I looked to others. Nearly every description included my joy and enthusiasm for life – not what I owned or the poise taught by elocution lessons Mom had me take. (Yes, I was one of those little girls.)
Her picture of me was not the one I carried inside my head. One day I understood the meaning of a spiritual war within us. I heard the warring voice in my head. Satan is the master of disguises. He knows how to make wrong look right, betrayal seems a courageous act and a lie change to a white lie that is truth in the end. Satan appears to guile me in worshipping the world that the things it contains, distracting me from knowing who God is!
Is there no hope? Are we bound for a life of desperation, a hopeless writhing on the bed of pain and suffering of desire and want? The answer lies in a four-letter word – HOPE. Hope changes everything. Hope is a gift from God. So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love. I Corinthians 13:13
Who can save us from ourselves and from this world that sometimes sinks us into a quagmire of doubt and despair? This is a question we voice, longing for an answer and a living hope. In a day when the world authoritatively tells us what matters – there is a still small voice that gives us hope that transcends the darkness of the world. If we but listen and obey.
When did this happen? Last year, last century, last 1000 years? No, this took place from the very foundation of the world. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters. Genesis 1:1-2
Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God. Psalm 90:1-2; Do you not know? Do you not hear? Has it not been told you from the beginning? Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth? Isaiah 40:21
God was not alone at the foundation of the world. His Son Jesus was with Him. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. John 1:1-5
There is more – before the foundation of the world God chose us – Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. Ephesians 3:6
We aren’t a ‘hey, you, there’ to God. He knows us by name before we were ever born. As I considered this, wondering if this were even possible, I remembered Psalm 147:4 – He determines the number of the stars; he gives to all of them their names. Consider how many stars in the sky. They are without number. If he remembers all the stars by name, God remembers each of our names before the foundation of the world. God even remembers our nicknames.
God chose us to worship Him before we were ever born. Yet, He knows which of us will be lured by the distraction of the world’s Satan. He knows what thoughts we will think and what deeds we will choose to do that will draw us away from Him.
I remember my cousin’s description of me, and I know truth. God sent his son Jesus to earth to be the Way to Eternity for all of us. When I ask, Who is God? I know when I follow Jesus the Truth and the Way – I know God. And He sees me glorified. He sees me purified and without sin. Not through anything I have earned or done on earth but Who I am in Christ Jesus. This is His Gift to me.
Each day I listen to the voices ricocheting around me. I hear the deafening voices that can instill fear of what is or could be and the terror of the evil one. And I rest in peace from the still steady whisper of love and hope of our Lord God, discerning and resting in His Promises.
He will keep you strong to the end so that you will be free from all blame on the day when our Lord Jesus Christ returns. God will do this, for he is faithful to do what he says, and he has invited you into partnership with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. I Corinthians 1:8-9.