Today’s reading: 1 Peter 2, Psalm 30
When you meet someone new, or are asked to introduce yourself, what do you say? How do you describe who you are? Do you talk about your job, your family, or your hobbies?
Both of my children are in middle school this year, Annika in her first year of middle school, and Freddy in his last year. It has been an interesting first two weeks as we’ve been helping Annika make choices about extra-curricular activities. Okay, maybe more challenging than just interesting. See, she’s never met an extra-curricular activity she wasn’t interested in, and she wants to be good at EVERYTHING! As a parent, I want her to have the opportunity to try a variety of different things. It is my hope she’ll eventually discover the intersection of her abilities and what she enjoys doing…something she loves and will be passionate about pursuing.
Over the course of the last two weeks, Annika has either participated in, or asked to try, gymnastics, diving, Japanese, basketball, game club, circus, the school play and the flute. Did I mention she is 10 years old and just starting middle school? She has a genuine interest in these activities, but she is also swayed by what her friends are doing. She wants to be in the mix, she doesn’t want to let her friends down, and certainly doesn’t want to pass on something she might later regret! She is simply trying to figure out who she is in this new middle school environment. Can you identify with her situation? I can think of countless times over the course of my 44 years where I’ve stopped and reflected on these same questions – Who am I? What defines me? How do I want to be described? What is my brand?
As I was studying today’s assigned reading, 1 Peter 2:9-10 made me stop and think about Annika.
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. Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy (1 Peter 2:9-10).
More than finding her passion, I want Annika to know her value isn’t determined by her skills, abilities, or the activities in which she participates. She has worth because of what God has done for her. He chose her! The scripture says, you are a chosen people…God’s special possession. Unfortunately life will still bring her disappointments, regardless of what activities she chooses. But trusting Jesus is the wisest choice she will ever make. He will never let her down.
For in Scripture it says: “See, I lay a stone in Zion, a chosen and precious cornerstone, and the one who trusts in him will never be put to shame” (1 Peter 2:6).