I Now Answer to the Name “Beloved”
Lucinda Secrest McDowell
“I’ll call nobodies and make them somebodies; I’ll call the unloved and make them beloved.” (Romans 9.25 MSG)
After half a lifetime of wrestling with unworthiness, I finally received the gift the above scripture speaks of — God’s unconditional love that transforms those who feel unloved and forgotten into His beloved.
From then on, we are called to live loved.
“It’s not deciding in my mind I deserve to be loved. Or manipulating my heart to feel loved. It’s settling in my soul, I was created by God, who formed me because He so much loved the very thought of me. When I was nothing, He saw something and declared it good. Very good. And very loved. God’s love isn’t based on me. It’s simply placed on me. And it’s the place from which I should live…loved.” (Lysa Terkeurst)
Have you forever been changed by the love of Christ?
Fil Anderson was just walking along the beach one day when suddenly a young boy with Down Syndrome ran towards him, hugging and kissing him. Though startled, he remembers feeling that God was saying: “That little boy was a picture of my wild love for you. The way he looked into your eyes is the way I have always looked at you. That beaming smile on his face is how you make me smile. The way he wildly screamed with glee is how I feel about you. The way he kissed you only begins to express the love that is in my heart for you. I am totally crazy about you.”
God is totally crazy about you and me too.
Which should make every other title or status or label pale in comparison to Beloved. Those are ever changing, but God’s love will always be the set point of who I truly am.
“Jesus came to share his identity with you and to tell you that you are the beloved sons and daughters of God. You were the beloved before your father, mother, brother, sister, or church loved you or hurt you. God loved you before you were born and God will love you after you die. This is who you are whether you feel it or not.” (Henri Nouwen)
To know this and truly believe it will enable us to live loved.
It was a decisive moment in Jesus’ life – the divine affirmation at his baptism: “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 2.17 KJV) That identity defined and empowered him all his days on earth.
Believing the opening verse of this blog can also be a decisive moment in our lives as well – the day we received the gift of a new name – Beloved.
And began thus to live out our calling. “Turn around and believe that the good news that we are loved is better than we ever dared hope, and to believe in that good news, to live out of it and toward it, is of all glad things in this world the gladdest thing of all.” (Frederich Buechner)
Just call me Beloved.
under the mercy, Cindy
©2017 Lucinda Secrest McDowell
NOTE: Did you enjoy this blog? If so, would you consider entering your email in the above right form and subscribing to it by email? I assure you I won’t overload your in-box, but would love to send you these ‘encouraging words’ each Wednesday. Thanks!