Two Things God Thinks of Me

In the last few days I’ve been struck by two ways to know what God thinks of me. They sound similar yet carry different meanings.

The first came from a devotional that highlighted Hebrews 11:16:

But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.

To be clear, no, Hebrews 11 is not about me. It’s a list recalling Old Testament lives of faith. And the writer pauses in the list to say, “God was not ashamed to be called their God.” Why? Their faith. Their faith to build an ark. Their faith to leave their families. Their faith to wait. Their faith to give up everything. Their faith to trust. Their faith to desire heaven over earth.

When I have and act by that kind of faith, I know God is not ashamed of me.

The second came from the book I’m reading by J. Paul Nyquist, Prepare.

“God never blesses anyone or anything He doesn’t approve of.”

Nyquist says this based on the beatitude: “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.” (Matthew 5:11) He begins chapter four of his book with this verse to support that persecution isn’t a curse but a blessing. So in the face of false accusation, reviling, and evil, I can know God approves of me.

When I face evil attacks, I know God approves of me.

I don’t have to doubt what God thinks of me when my faith is steadfast. He approves. He is not ashamed.

Photo credit: Allef Vinicius on Unsplash

31 Proverbs Highlights: #11-City Life

(A simple series highlighting verses from each chapter of the book of Proverbs)

When the righteous thrive, a city rejoices; when the wicked die, there is joyful shouting. A city is built up by the blessing of the upright, but it is torn down by the mouth of the wicked. Whoever shows contempt for his neighbor lacks sense, but a person with understanding keeps silent. A gossip goes around revealing a secret, but a trustworthy person keeps a confidence. Without guidance, a people will fall, but with many counselors there is deliverance. (‭Proverbs‬ ‭11‬:‭10-14‬ CSB)

When you think about your city, what comes to mind? When you consider the spiritual state of your city, how do you describe it?

These five verses speak into the health of a city’s life.

  • If a city wants to thrive, wickedness must be overcome by righteousness.
  • If a city wants to thrive, blessings should be given to the upright rather than the wicked.
  • If a city wants to thrive, neighbors must pursue understanding one another rather than showing contempt.
  • If a city wants to thrive, citizens must build trust by respecting one another.
  • If a city wants to thrive, it must have clear direction coming from wise leaders.