During my early days of being an official grandfather, I went to pick up one of my granddaughters at her preschool. You know the old Art Linkletter TV show, “Kids Say the Darnedest Things”? My granddaughter was like that, saying one cute-ism after another.
On this particular day, she said something from her car seat in the back of my car that made me laugh out loud. I told her, “You’re special!” Her reply, without a single moment’s hesitation, was, “You didn’t know that, Pop?” Which made me laugh all the more.
The trust is, she was – and continues to be – special. What a blessing that is, to know that you’re special. What about you? Do you consider yourself special?
I don’t know how many times I’ve talked with people who would look down, shuffle their feet a bit, and self-consciously say, “Aw, I’m nothin’ special.” This sounds incredibly humble, to be so self-effacing, Much better than the person who struts around as if they’re convinced they are God’s greatest gift to whatever they do or wherever they happen to be.
But being made to feel special is such a joy, especially when people and forces in the world around us seem to conspire to make us feel exceedingly un-special. The fact is, particularly for those of us who are children of God, we truly are special. How do we know? Because, as the old children’s song informs us, “The Bible tells (us) so.”
Speaking to the Israelites shortly before they were to make their long-anticipated entrance into the Promised Land, their leader, Moses, declared, “What other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the Lord our God is near us whenever we pray to him? And what other nation is so great as to have such righteous decrees and laws as this body of laws I am setting before you today?” Deuteronomy 4:7-8).
Indeed, the people of Israel were special, chosen by God and given His unique system of laws to guide every aspect of their lives. Some of those laws were actually incorporated into the Constitution of the United States, precepts for treating people with justice and equality, and according them with certain rights and freedoms.
But after Jesus Christ’s death, burial and resurrection, just as the thick veil of the Jewish temple was torn apart from top to bottom, the barrier between Jews and non-Jews was torn down forever. God’s love, grace and mercy became available to people of every nation, culture and language. All who call upon the name of the Lord Jesus would become special – because God ordained it to be so.
We see this truth affirmed elsewhere in the Scriptures. Psalm 139:14 says we are “fearfully and wonderfully made” by an all-powerful, all-knowing Creator God. Then the apostle Paul explains just how important and set apart are we as members of the eternal family of God. He wrote, “You are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession” (1 Peter 2:9).
There’s that word “special” again. Moses assured the Israelites, “you are a holy people belonging to the LORD your God. The LORD has chosen you to be His prized possession out of all the peoples on the face of the earth” (Deuteronomy 14:2). And in much the same way, we’re promised, “He gave Himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds” (Titus 2:14).
Now, try to tell me that doesn’t make us special!