Day 3 – Beloved: The story of being chosen
Today we are going to turn one page in our Bibles and go to Isaiah 44. We will be all over the place in the book of Isaiah during our study. The book itself is not linear, that is, it’s not chronological. Isaiah doesn’t take us through a timeline of history like some books do. When you start at Isaiah Chapter One and read through, it’s beautiful, but it won’t go from A to B to C. My study Bible tells me that the book of Isaiah covers at least 200 years of Old Testament History, circling in and around and back again on itself. The message of Isaiah isn’t a narrative as much as it is a call and response of God to His people and His people to God. It is the message of Salvation played out again and again, preparing the way for Christ to come and save us, once and for all time.
Let’s read Isaiah 44:1-5 –
“But now hear, O Jacob my servant,
Israel whom I have chosen!
2 Thus says the Lord who made you,
who formed you from the womb and will help you:
Fear not, O Jacob my servant,
Jeshurun whom I have chosen.
3 For I will pour water on the thirsty land,
and streams on the dry ground;
I will pour my Spirit upon your offspring,
and my blessing on your descendants.
4 They shall spring up among the grass
like willows by flowing streams.
5 This one will say, ‘I am the Lord’s,’
another will call on the name of Jacob,
and another will write on his hand, ‘The Lord’s,’
and name himself by the name of Israel.”
Part of the message of being loved is the message of being chosen.
Think of all the love stories you’ve watched play out on the screen. Girl loves boy. Boy isn’t sure and is really preoccupied in life with something else. Girl does something or something happens to girl. Boy realizes he is missing out. Boy chooses girl. Love songs play and hearts take flight on the screen.
Or think of every young girl’s longing for a best friend.
Think of every middle schooler’s desire to be picked anything but last in gym class.
We want to be chosen. Being chosen is very often how we understand being loved.
Isaiah 44:1-5 gives us a beautiful picture of God’s love that chooses us.
“Israel whom I have chosen!” (v. 1)
The Bible teaches us that as gentiles, in Christ, and in God’s covenant of love for all nations, we are chosen.
1 Peter 2:9-10 proclaims this promise clearly –
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
Does this sound a tad familiar? If you were with us for yesterday’s study you may recall the language of verse 10 – not a people, now a people; without mercy, now receiving mercy – from the passages. This is how God’s Word works, ever weaving His love and promises into one another and into our lives.
What other promises can you find that speak of God’s love and His choosing in Isaiah 44:1-5 above?
Take a minute to look before you go further. I’ll list a few below, for when you’re ready.
We are formed lovingly by His hands.
We are helped. (v. 2)
Our fears are lifted.
We have been filled.
Our thirst for Life and goodness and mercy and justice has been quenched with the Spirit.
We are blessed, our children are blessed. We know Christ in our lives and His forgiveness. (v. 3)
We are raised up. (v. 4)
His name is written on our hands. We are His. (v. 5)
We are not drained, sisters. We are filled.
How often have you been exhausted and need the promise of the Lord’s love to fill you and sustain you? Weariness, you may come, but you may not reign in our lives.
We are “The Lord’s!”
We are not forsaken. Our children are not forsaken. We are baptized believer’s of the Bright Morning Star. We rest in the promise of His salvation. His name is written on our forehead and our heart.
We are “The Lord’s!”
We are not orphaned. We are greatly loved. We are made and formed from the womb. Planned before the dawn of time.
We are “The Lord’s!”
Write it on your hand today, literally. Bring back fond adolescent memories by taking ink to skin. Write something more important than the homework due next Tuesday. Let your children and your friends ask about it. Write it large or write it in tiny script.
This is your story of being chosen.
If you feel so inclined, we’d love to see your hand, kiddos hands, chosen hands! Upload a photo in the comments section or share on social media today and tag #ilovemyshepherd and #HeCallsMeLoved