Friday, August 31, 2012

...And It Was Very Good

Ever feel like you're not worth the dust from which you were created?  Then this is for you. 

I recently finished a book that imagined life during the time of Nehemiah.  It  follows the story of a girl who grew up without a mom, taught herself to read and write (something nearly unheard of during those days) and was hired to serve as the chief scribe for the Queen.  She becomes the wife of a prince due to an arranged marriage, and through all that has to work through the feelings of never having measured up to anyone's expectations. After discussing this with the palace gardener, he asked her to think about what she had learned about the creation of man.  God created them, gave them a couple instructions and then pronounced them good - before they had done anything.  That got me thinking, so I did a little research.

Genesis 1 comes to a close with verse 31: "God saw all that he had made - and it was very good. And there was evening and morning the sixth day." (NIV) He had just spoken the world out of nothing, put plants, animals and everything else in it, then stepped back and admired it for a moment.  Days 1-5 end with "And God saw that it was good."  Then after he put his crowning glory, humans, on the planet, he saw that it was very good.  The difference between day 5 and day 6?  Us.

Based on the passage, what had humans done to be deemed "very good"?  Nothing.  We had just been created, hadn't even been alive long enough to do anything.  We have been the apple of his eye from the beginning.  This has not changed some thousands of years later.  God's first act of grace was calling us very good when we hadn't had a moment to prove ourselves to him.

Why then do we insist on trying to earn his grace?  Because we're fallen humans. Thanks to a serpent, we have a hard time remembering that we're the apple of God's eye regardless of what we do.  Our "doing" should come out of a desire to serve as a display of our love for God and not because we feel we have to earn God's favor.  Our worth comes from God's love for us, and we can do NOTHING to change it. As I am learning this point, I am amazed at the amount of freedom that I am experiencing on a daily basis.

Will you join me in that freedom?

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