i am who you say i am

The other day this moving worship song came on in the car.  The words spoke powerfully to me:

Who am I that the highest King
Would welcome me?
I was lost but He brought me in
Oh His love for me
Oh His love for me

Who the Son sets free
Oh is free indeed
I’m a child of God
Yes I am

Yes I am

I am chosen
Not forsaken
I am who You say I am
You are for me
Not against me
I am who You say I am

(Hillsong Worship)

When I heard this beautiful song, when I sang these beautiful words, I thought first about how they apply to:

The children at the border scared and without their parents

They are who God says they are

Beloved, chosen, image bearers of our Creator

The refugees awaiting processing in camps all over the world

They are who God says they are

   Beloved, chosen, image bearers of our Creator

The survivor of domestic violence making a new life for herself

She is who God says she is

Beloved, chosen, an image bearer of our Creator

The family of the latest victim of violent crime – or the families of the ones who we have all forgotten because the cycle seems to never end  

They are who God says they are

Beloved, chosen, image bearers of our Creator

The elderly man in a nursing home no one visits

He is who God says he is

Beloved, chosen, an image bearer of our Creator

The foster children without a home

They are who God says they are

     Beloved, chosen, image bearers of our Creator

And these are important and even needed considerations.  We are to share in the suffering of the lost, hurting and careworn of this world.  The Word of God makes that clear over and over again.

But what struck me then was that too often these days when I worship in song, when I listen to a teaching, when I read a book I am always looking to apply it to my work, to the fight against injustice, to the alleviation of suffering, to the mobilization of God’s people for the work he has created us for.  Good things indeed, but the words of this song and many others are also meant for me as a beloved, chosen, image bearer.  I, also, am who God says I am.  I imagine I am not the only one who needs to be reminded to stop, from time to time, to be sure I am drawing close to God as a daughter in need of love and healing and not just a worker called to harvest or a prophet shouting at the wind.  His heart breaks for what is happening in our world today, of this I have no doubt.  He desires me to use the gifts he has given me and the privileges I was born with to affect change and stand with the powerless.  This I know.  But I also know, when I stop and allow myself to, that I am beloved, I am a child of God, I have been set free and there are moments when I simply need to rest in that.

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