Today's scripture has been particularly meaningful and encouraging to me over the course of my life.
I was abused as a child. During my childhood, my mother was deeply afraid of my father, so she was unable to rescue me from the various kinds of abuse he perpetrated against me. I felt very alone, forgotten, and abandoned.
I have come to understand firsthand that multitudes of people we encounter daily are just trying to survive until someone rescues them—and that someone could be you or me.
The Bible says that in God's love, He chose us [actually picked us out for Himself as His own] in Christ before the foundation of the world… (Ephesians 1:4 AMPC). He planned for us to be adopted as His own children. These beautiful words brought a great deal of healing to my wounded soul. God adopts the forsaken and the lonely, and He lifts them up and gives them value.
Mother Teresa of Calcutta felt that each person she met was "Jesus in disguise." Just try to imagine how much differently we would treat people if we thought of them as she did. She realized that God loves everyone as His own sons and daughters.
If someone insulted, slighted, ignored, or devalued one of my children, I would take it as a personal insult, so why is it so hard to understand that God feels the same way when one of His children is mistreated?
You and I belong to Him, so we need to love ourselves appropriately and treat ourselves well. We also need to treat others as part of God's family and do what we can to build them up and add value to their lives.
Prayer Starter: Father, thank You for personally choosing me—picking me out as Your very own. Help me today and every day to encourage and value others, treating them as Your precious sons and daughters. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.