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Lent 2017: You Are Mine: Day 31

A Song of Praise

by

Today's Text: Isaiah 42:1-25, Isaiah 43:1-28, Psalm 72:1-4, 2 Corinthians 5:17

Text: Isaiah 42:1-25,  Isaiah 43:1-28, Psalm 72:1-4, 2 Corinthians 5:17

I miss Pluto.

When I was a kid, there were nine planets in our solar system. But somewhere between getting my college degree and buying our first house, Pluto got bumped from true planet status on a technicality. I’ve never gotten used to rattling off the names of the heavenly bodies and stopping short at Neptune.

Recently I was bemoaning Pluto’s tragic and seemingly unstable galactic status when my husband laughed and reasoned with me, “Raechel. Pluto hasn’t changed. Nothing has changed about what it’s made of—it’s just that the people who have never actually been to Pluto don’t call it a planet anymore.”

I bet you feel a lot like Pluto sometimes. I do. For better or worse, we allow someone who doesn’t know us—someone trillions of miles away—to define us. We receive the world’s labels and live at the mercy of everyone else’s “technicalities.” We trade the truth we know about ourselves for a lie, and go on living misunderstood, mislabeled, or just plain forgotten.

How can we halt this orbit of lies? How can we respond when we’re pretty sure some of the unfortunate (or downright awful) labels the world sticks to our chests are technically true about us?

Let’s turn to God’s Word together. Let’s let the One who made us tell us what we’re made of and what we’re made for. Only God has the ability to define you, so let’s see how He defines you.

He calls you beloved (Romans 9:25).
You are His treasured possession (Deuteronomy 7:6).
You are His child (John 1:12, Romans 8:17).
You are free (Galatians 5:1).
You have been redeemed (Ephesians 1:7).
You have been and will be restored (1 Peter 5:10, Colossians 1:13-14).
You have been and can be forgiven (Hebrews 10:17, 1 John 1:9).

That’s not all. Your God—the One Hebrews 13:8 tells us is forever unchanging—He not only names you, He pursues you and cares for you personally.

We see this pursuit in the book of Isaiah. And painful as it is to watch God’s people refuse Him, chapter after chapter, it is all the more astounding to watch as God loves them still. He “who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread out the earth and what comes from it, who gives breath to the people on it”—He is the one who appointed a Savior to be “a covenant for the people and a light to the nations, in order to open blind eyes, to bring out prisoners from the dungeon” (Isaiah 42:5-7).

That’s why, even in the midst of threat and uncertainty, God tells His people to do something extraordinary—He tells them to sing! “This is what I will do for them,” we read in the text (v.16). And then the words our approval-seeking hearts long to hear: “I will not forsake them.”

And He won’t. Scripture makes it clear.

He knew each of your days before you were conceived (Psalm 139:16).
He has your name written on the palm of His hands (Isaiah 49:16).
It is your name —yours!—which He has called “mine” (Isaiah 43:1).
It is your head on which He numbers each strand of hair, and your tears of which He keeps count (Matthew 10:29-31, Psalm 56:8).
It was for you He died while you were yet a sinner (Romans 5:8).

The world will label you all your life. Tall, short, smart, bossy, ugly, pretty, worth it, and not. But here is the only label that truly matters:

“Now this is what the Lᴏʀᴅ says—
the one who created you, Jacob,
and the one who formed you, Israel—
‘Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by your name; you are mine.’”
- Isaiah 43:1

SRT-LENT2017-Instagram31s

  • This was a great reminder for me today! Sometimes I feel like God is so far away, but he has made so many promises that he will keep. In the craziness of this world I forget that I have a father that will not forsake me! PTL with a new song!

  • Absolutely love this reminder that what others think, or even what we might think about ourselves does not change the truth about who we are or whose we are. Thank you for the reminder this morning!

  • I become more and more in awe of our God every time He reveals Himself to me, and again I am left in absolute awe after reading these passages in Isaiah. It’s been a little challenging for me reading this book, seeing God’s people sinning against Him so horribly and then seeing His anger as a result, but then you see His loving grace so beautifully as in these few chapters. In Isaiah 42:25, He says that He removes our transgressions because of His own sake, showing that He can’t help but love us regardless of our wicked ways. He can’t stay mad at us for long because His love for us is too strong, too great. That of course doesn’t give us the right to sin, but knowing this reveals His love to me more beautifully than I’ve known before. My goodness I am just so in love with our Savior, you guys.

  • Jody Heavenrich Hensley

    I am a few days behind and happy to be so, I needed to read this beautiful post today. Thank you SRT and thank you Rachel for writing it!!!

  • call me loved

    Wow it’s just so amazing how the God who created the heavens and earth has time to love someone like me . “He calls me beloved” so then when the world says that i am ugly or inadequate I remember his promises . He loves me more than anyone can love me . Therefore I shall not be dismayed or broken hearted when the world rejects me . For the Lord my God sustains me . My confidence used to stem from people’s opinion of me and that’s dangerous because it goes either way . One day someone says your beautiful and smart and the next when they’re having a bad day they shut you down and you become sad , disappointed and depressed. But God never changes His words . They flow forever into our hearts . We seek him and he ensures that We always have joy !!.

  • Teresa Botkin

    He is such a personal God! He loves our uniqueness!

  • I was struck today, as I caught up on the readings by how rich the description is of God in Isaiah 43 and how wonderful this is for me! He is the one who creates me, redeems me, calls me – by name!, sustains me, takes away my anxieties and fears, and loves me unconditionally. And what He does, none can reverse (Is 43:13). Even if I feel unworthy He has said that I am, and none can reverse His declaration

  • I’ve had Isaiah 43:18-19 written on a chalkboard in the kitchen for a few months now. I had been going through a difficult season and felt that God was reiterating to me that He was working in the midst of it. Seasons change and, through them all, He’s always working for us, changing us, and redeeming things. “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.” He is constantly making all things new, and for me that was the ultimate comfort through a challenging year. He not only accepts me and defines me as His beloved but also makes a way for me and changes my heart in the process.

  • Carrie Rogers

    Powerful words! Thank you Lord!

  • Meredith Lea

    What a powerful message for our tween and teen young ladies too!

  • I listened to Tim Keller’s sermon ” Blessed Self Forgetfulness” on Monday and have had it rolling around in my brain and chewing on the meat of it since. God is the only one who can define us because He made us. We are made in His image, His likeness. We are the only creation breathing in His breath. We are made to breathe out His praise! “Breathing in His grace and breathing out His praise”. Just keep breathing!

  • I know that this devotion was in part a response to some of the crying out I’ve done in the past few weeks or months or even years. I am struggling to believe what God says about me. I think its a combination of a multitude of circumstances and labels internalized that leave my spirit crushed. Simply put, its hard to counter these labels when you have a host of things suggesting otherwise. Honestly, I’m not sure what to do. I’m not sure how to pull myself together. I no longer have friends who can pour into me because I’ve had to move over 10 times in my adult life. People get tired of following you around, sustaining a relationship, etc. New people see you as transient and not worth the investment. Don’t get me me wrong, I’m a fighter and will be functional but I worry that my heart is growing hardened. I have little mercy for myself and I am starting to believe that this is it. I’ve asked God for a simple break from the hard stuff. Just enough to catch my breathe, fill my tank, and gain spiritual and emotional composure but I’m starting to think that I am destined for a life of suffering without reprieve. And perhaps that is my contribution in this world. I will have to gain acceptance.

    • Christine

      Praying for you right now that the Lord would grant you a reprieve. That He would show you He has so much more for you than suffering. That He would remove your heart of stone, that He would pour out His Spirit into all your desert places.

    • Kersti

      Oh Hope. This is tough time for you, and I am sorry you are going through it.
      Moving is hard, finding lasting connections is hard. I know I have moved so many times as an adult too.
      I pray God brings something or someone into your path today to remind you that you are not alone. He is with you, and He has people for you in the city in which you are in. It’s hard to believe, but it is true.
      God is for you. ❤️

  • Melody Suarez

    Lately I’ve been relying on my friends and fiance’s actions to define who I am and how valuable I am. Sometimes, as a Christian your expectations get so high in relationships and when they don’t meet your expectations, you feel let down and discouraged. I want to believe what God says about my worth and the fact that He counts the tears as well as the strands of hair on my head. I pray that what God says about me rings louder than any action or words that anyone says or doesn’t say about me. ❤️

  • Isaiah 42:6(b)-7(a) gave me some great worship this morning. We got Jesus as a gift from God, given as a promise secured, a covenant-holy covenant-to be a light. To bring sight. To break free of the prisons that bind us. Y’all, we are bound to God because of Christ, as believers. He ushers us into this relationship and then brings sight, freedom. How we choose to live that out is ours and I am dumb-founded that I too often choose to not honor that covenantal relationship, attempting to put coverings on my “sight” and walk back into an unlocked prison cell.

    So thankful to get to camp out in these verses and see another song of praise to give Him today.

  • I found myself laying in bed last night telling my husband that I was questioning everything…who God is, whether I’m actually saved, whether I really believe everything I’ve claimed to believe or if I’ve just gone along with what I’ve been told is true my whole life. Sometimes it all just feels so empty and silent, leaving me wondering if I really love Him or if I just go through all of the right motions. And isn’t it wrong that I would feel that? Shouldn’t it feel full? Shouldn’t I feel incredible love for my Savior all the time for who He is and what He did for me? And then, I opened today’s passage and devotional and it’s like He spoke directly to all of those questions, telling me who He is and who I am in His eyes. So today, my prayer is that the truths from this passage would push all of the lies out of our minds and fill us with the joy of the Lord! Really thankful for all of your responses and the honesty that helps me know that I’m not alone!

    • She Reads Truth

      Thank you for sharing this, Casey! So encouraging to read this morning. Grateful that you’re in our community.

      – Stormye

  • I’ve been feeling so discouraged lately in all aspects of my life and one of my biggest struggles is with the labels that I put on MYSELF – I’m unworthy, undeserving, or not good enough. Today’s devotional was a much needed reminder that the labels I apply to myself don’t carry any weight because He is the only one who can truly define me. I am a beloved, treasured, free, redeemed, restored, and forgiven child of God! Praise Him for that!

    • She Reads Truth

      Praying for you, sweet Corrie. Asking the Lord to continue to define you and show you what it means to be His!!

      – Stormye

  • Caroline

    Amen!!! SO beautifully said and so true! I am his chosen daughter! Couldn’t agree more

    http://www.in-due-time.com

  • Jenny Stade

    This is just what I needed today.

    Jenny Stade
    https://jennystade.wixsite.com/tebahofgrace

  • The view of Pluto sparked me in a different direction. People’s viewpoints of Pluto can change, but that doesn’t change Pluto, Pluto is still the same. And the same applies to our God!! People’s and my viewpoints of God can change, but that doesn’t change who God is! God is unchanging and steady! God is the same God yesterday, today and tomorrow. And praise God that what I do doesn’t change who He is. Whenever I feel doubt about Him, I should return back to these truths and what I know about Him to be true.

    • Jade

      I am totally with you there sister!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Keri McCue

    “Your God—the One Hebrews 13:8 tells us is forever unchanging—He not only names you, He pursues you and cares for you personally.” – I’ve been dealing with a difficult friend lately. A friend who has been telling a few people things about me that simply aren’t true. Things about my character. And as much as I KNOW these things are false, I’ve still doubted that. Until someone reminded me, “Keri, you know who you are in Christ, keep on seeking after Him and your character will speak for itself.” Today’s reading was confirmation of that. His opinion is the only one that matters. And He is the one who names me. <3

    http://www.littlelightonahill.com

  • This scripture brought me the first little bit of hope I’ve felt in a long time. I feel loved by God after reading his words, and comforted to know his view of me. Despite the depression, anxiety, and homesickness I’ve been going through, I feel blessed to know that I can sing a new song, that God calls on me to sing a new song unto him–no matter my pain. Thank you, SRT, and thanks to all the ladies here, as it really does to help to read these comments every day. Love to all.

    • Kendra

      Been there, Kelsey! It’s no fun. I’ll be praying that the Holy Spirit will keep that song in your heart and for eyes to see the reminders God gives that He is with you! Hang in there!

  • Leenda324

    6 “I, Yahweh, have called You
    for a righteous purpose, 
    and I will hold You by Your hand.
    I will keep You and appoint You
    to be a covenant for the people
    and a light to the nations,
    7 in order to open blind eyes,
    to bring out prisoners from the dungeon,
    and those sitting in darkness from the prison house.

    The Word of the Lord. Thanks be to God.

    This isn’t just for Israel — it’s for each of us who has been called. For those of us getting older and alone (me!) this is a precious reminder. We aren’t really alone. Yahweh himself holds our hand. Life may not turn out as we expected, but the One who never changes knew this in advance. He is not capricious. He IS faithful despite our being “prone to wander.”

    • Lana

      I struggle with loneliness. On those days in particular, I’ll have random conversations with the Holy Spirit. I feel in good company because he actually speaks to my heart back. These are random conversations mind you. Like, I open the refrigerator and say, Holy Spirit, I just don’t know what to eat! Or I say, Holy Spirit, what do you think about so and so? It sounds so strange, but on the days I remember to do it, it really helps. I actually feel in the presence of my everlasting Friend and companion.

  • Cassie Kendall

    I LOVE how the Message translates the beginning of chapter 43:

    “1-4 But now, God’s Message,
    the God who made you in the first place, Jacob,
    the One who got you started, Israel:
    “Don’t be afraid, I’ve redeemed you.
    I’ve called your name. You’re mine.
    When you’re in over your head, I’ll be there with you.
    When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down.
    When you’re between a rock and a hard place,
    it won’t be a dead end—
    Because I am God, your personal God,
    The Holy of Israel, your Savior.
    I paid a huge price for you:
    all of Egypt, with rich Cush and Seba thrown in!
    That’s how much you mean to me!
    That’s how much I love you!
    I’d sell off the whole world to get you back,
    trade the creation just for you.”

    How awesome is it that we are loved like that?! No earthly love, no romance novel, nothing we can even imagine is as wonderful as the love God has for us!

  • Katherine Anne

    This was such a timely post for me today. Thank you SRT for this resource!

  • Wow. Just wow. This has been my favorite day so far. I am so in awe of God. How beautifully worded the scriptures are. But how beautiful their meaning. Wow. I cannot even express the way my heart and my stomach feel right now!

  • Kimberly

    My granddaughter has asked me to baptize her at this weekends services at our church. What a lovely reminder that God pursues us and looks after us. These verses and thoughts will be going into my prayer for her.

    • She Reads Truth

      Praise God! What a beautiful thing to get to baptize your sweet girl. Excited for you both!

      – Stormye

  • So thankful to have this assurance and to know he is always there with us and loves us. I have big changes going on in my life right now and am trusting that God has great plans for me and my family.

  • I found myself wondering about the towns Isaiah tells to sing in chapter 42 verses 10-12. So I went to the Matthew Henry commentary on BlueLetterBible.com and ohhh am I so glad I did! So all of the places Isaiah calls to sing refer to the Gentile world! Here he is speaking of this new thing the Lord is doing – the prophecy of a Savior. But not just a Savior for the Jews as they would have planned. No, he is saying this new thing will also be sung about to the ends of the earth. Matthew Henry notes that at that time Jews…at least “good” Jews…stayed in Jerusalem and they wouldn’t have gone down to the sea. The Islands likely referred to the Greek islands. The wilderness and settlements where Kedar lives and Sela refer to those who don’t live in cities. These are people who live in villages and small cottages – again, likely Gentiles. He also notes that this could refer to the poor, rude, despicable, barbarous as those tended to be the types of people who dwelt in the mountains. Isaiah is not just calling the Jews to sing a song of praise for the promise of a Savior, but he is prophesying that songs of praise for God will be sung from the least to the greatest. From the Jews to the Gentiles. This is our song too! How awesome is that?!!

  • I had both kids to myself last night while my husband was at a bible study. I love my children but I lost my cool with my two year old twice. I am not proud that I yelled at a two year old. I’m ashamed that I did that. (He and I made up before he went to bed but it still doesn’t make it ok). I woke up and first thing I did was confess and repent my sin again to the Lord. Then I read this. Thank you for your words of encouragement Raechel because while I’m still in a fallen body my savior has forgiven me and I am a child of the One True King and I am saved and have been redeemed. Just the reminder I needed this morning. My prayer is that it will be my meditation all day today. Thankful for you ladies.

  • This past Christmas we had a blow up in our family. A lot of things were said about me that aren’t true. However, some of them were true but not explained to me in the right setting. My feelings were crushed and my confidence shattered.

    Since Christmas the Lord has been doing a good work though me. I needed to hear some of those things, I just wish they hadn’t come like that, and so I’ve been praying for the Lord to change my heart. On good days I take what He is doing and feel empowered by the Holy Spirit as He works in me but on bad days I remember the things that were said about me and it changes my whole attitude. It crushes my spirit again.

    Today’s scripture and devotional resonated with my current situation. On one of my bad days when I was believing the lies said about me, my husband finally looked at me and said, “do you know you are beloved? You are a princess under the one true King. You are made new. You are beautiful. He loves you despite your sin. You are adored.”

    It was exactly what I needed in that moment, to be reminded that I am God’s beloved daughter. I needed to think about myself in light of God’s truths and not what others said or perceived about me.

    “Fear not, for I have redeemed you: I have called you by name, you are mine.” YES! He has redeemed me! I am HIS! Lord, please help me to believe this when I’m in the midst of believing lies and holding close what others think about me. You have created me! I am yours!

    • Kimberly Martinson

      Bless you!

    • She Reads Truth

      Jess – this was beautiful. Thank you for sharing! Praising the Lord for your sweet husband who points your vision back to Christ when you need it most. What a good Father we have who gives us good gifts and a new, wonderful name.

      – Stormye

  • Much of the Scripture from today reminded me of Ellie Holcomb’s song Red Sea Road. The chorus goes like this:
    “We will sing to our souls, we won’t bury our hope – where He leads us to go there’s a Red Sea Road. When we can’t see the way, he will part the waves and we’ll never walk alone down the Red Sea Road.”

    It’s a beautiful song – definitely look it up if you haven’t heard it before!

  • “I am Yahweh, that is My name; I will not give My glory to another or My praise to idols. The past events have indeed happened. Now I declare new events; I announce them to You before they occur.” – Isaiah 42:8-9. We were created in His likeness (genesis 1:27) and this is what The Lord says about Himself, He will not give His glory to another, He won’t follow false gods or idols, He is the one true God. And He calls us to do the same. Which is just a nice reminder to search my heart. But the second part of these verses is what caught me this morning. It’s like God is saying ‘yeah the past has already happened, but your future little child of mine that is where there is victory and freedom’. He also is saying ‘I’ll show you, prove to you I am who I say I am’. And He does. Every promise God has said to us He has followed through. Amazing and what I needed to hear today.

  • I adored all the scripture today. I sat here flipping back and forth in my Bible highlighting each verse, soaking in the word! ❤

  • Kathleen

    Raechel’s devotion to scripture is beautiful this morning. I love her gathering of scripture to remind us so clearly who He is, who we are and what to do. Sing. Thank you!

  • I find great comfort in Is. 42:3. “a bruised reed he will not break, and a faintly burning wick he will not quench…” Sometimes I feel like a bruised reed and a “faintly burning wick”. The smallest of breezes – just a breath – will snuff out the little bit of light that I have left. This verse is a message of comfort and hope. It’s a picture of God’s mercy. It’s a lesson to me that I can completely trust Him. In the worst of times He is going to be there.
    This is reinforced in Is 43:1-3. These verses don’t say “if”; they say “when”. We are going to go through hard times. We are going to be bruised reeds and faintly burning wicks, but God says, “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.” He told Israel, “I gave Egypt as your ransom, Cush and Seba in exchange for you.” I read this verse and think, “and one day He will give His Only Son for their ransom.” And not only for their ransom, but for my ransom. Because of this I can sing a new song. He is doing a new thing!
    Be blessed, sisters!

  • Been working on writing a life purpose statement lately, and 43:7 and 43:21 lay it out pretty clearly. He created us for his glory, for Himself, to give Him praise. That should come first in my life purpose.

  • Churchmouse

    Red Bull! That’s what your devotion is to me this morning, Raechel. A jolt to my system that lifts me up and will energize me all day long! He defines me. He will not forsake me. I am His and He is mine! Ahhhh these words. This reminder. Better than Red Bull. Thank you! Thank you! (Can you hear me singing?!? Praise all day today!)

  • Elisabeth7291

    4 Because you are precious in my eyes,
    and honored, and I love you

    Receive this, dear sisters in Christ!

  • I am always taken back with the love he has for us. To see his people turn away again and again yet he still comes to their aid. I am thankful for a relentless GOD and for a review of all the things that he says I am <3

    • Kendra

      I agree! God is so merciful, kind and loving- even through the hard stuff.

  • Living in a world where it will continuously label you, yet there is only one label that matters… I always wonder why it is so easy to hold on to and believe the labels given to us, especially by those who don’t truly know us, yet it’s hard to cling on to the one label that truly defines us; that we are HIS. The struggle is real when it comes to that for me! I wrote down all of the truths in my little journal so that I can go back to them as a reminder of all of the things I AM, when I’m finding my heart is being flooded by all of the things I am not.

    PS: I too feel a little lost and sad that they’ve decided Pluto is not a planet. In our own little world, I think we can still say “Pluto!” after Neptune. ;)

  • peanut cheese

    It is beautiful how in the ‘heavy’ book of Isaiah we can find comfort relevant to our own situations and day-to-day lives. And I’m happy that the devotions point it out.
    However, if I may be a LITTLE bit critical, I sometimes feel that this is done a bit too much. I’m not talking about this devotion in particular, but over the last few days the devotions and comments are largely saying: don’t worry, you are good as you are; remember that your feelings are important to God, etc.
    I do believe that these are truths, however, I also consider the need for feelings of self-worth to be idols of us in this time and I feel that it sometimes draws the attention away from some other truths about the nature of God or the specific context in which this book was written. I sometimes miss an explanation of the deeper meanings of this book, as I found more at the start of this reading plan.
    I wonder if I’m the only one thinking this way or whether I should see this differently. I’m happy to hear your thoughts on this (and I certainly don’t mean to offend any author or comment-writer, I just want to check if these feelings are realistic).

    • Sarah Joy

      I would’ve enjoyed some deeper explanation on the book of Isaiah throughout. Unfortunately, these devotions are written months before they are published, so they won’t shift in the direction they’re going. I’ve considered looking into seeing whether there is an in-depth study on Isaiah as this study has me curious.

    • Churchmouse

      Not sure I understand you exactly but thought I’d share my approach to SRT. I keep my study Bible open each morning and read it along for more indepth explanation for the harder Scriptures. I read the devotion as personal insight to trigger me to think outside the box. And I read the comments as each woman’s personal application and experience. There is much to be gained by all three. I dig deeper on my own for further understanding. I find the devotion and comments thought provoking and challenging. They remind me that the Word speaks to us each individually, yet we all gain from the corporate sharing. I like that SRT gives me enough to chew on and yet doesn’t spoon feed me. It’s made me curious enough to search commentaries and seek out other mature believers for discussion- usually at a local coffee spot. Lovely and lively conversation about the Word! Anyway, this is my approach – it works for me.

      • Lana

        This is my same exact approach, Churchmouse! We have the same study routine!

      • peanut cheese

        thanks for that, Churchmouse. I’ll try out the same approach. Now to find enough time (I started off so well at the start of Lent, with 30 mins each morning, but now it’s often crammed into 15-20 mins).

      • Casey

        Thank you for sharing your approach to these lessons, churchmouse. Throughout this study I’ve looked at SRT as more of a daily devotional than a true Bible study (I use a different community app for that), and that has helped challenge me to do my own digging when I want further insight into the scripture. Think I’ll read along with my study Bible moving forward.

    • Kacy S

      Agree!!! I’d love a devotional less focused on me & more focused on The Word and unpacking it!

    • Jenni

      I read through the scriptures and the devotional again and I see what you mean- the devotional could definitely be more God-focused than me-focused.

    • amyloukuo

      I agree – especially with a weighty book like Isaiah, having devotionals that are relevant to the daily readings, what God is doing or saying in those passages, would bring the depth and spiritual maturity we’re looking for. The devotionals have been loving, thought-provoking, inspiring, and all beautifully written; but missing great opportunities to sharpen knowledge, faith, maturity, and wisdom in readers. SRT, we love you and we love the studies and devotionals and your commitment to engaging us in the Word daily, and I for one desperately need this external accountability accountability to read daily! I hope you hear our comments and strive to deepen the devotionals in future studies.

  • I love this devotional with all of my heart! I did a few things whilst reading this devotional — I had a good giggle at Raechel’s quirky introduction regarding Pluto, I cried (A LOT) at how she also pointed out the very sad truth that people so quickly jump to conclusions and raise accusations about strangers they don’t know from a bar of soap and how an ‘orbit of lies’ so fiercely makes us question who we really are and whether we should start believing in the labels that other people stick upon us. BUT! I cried happy tears too, after crying many sad tears, because I’m all to familiar with having false labels stuck on me, accusations raised and untruthful lies tied to my name… however, back to the happy tears! I cried happy tears, because isn’t it the most reassuring and heartwarming thing to know that Our God is the only one who can truly define us? We need not ever worry about anyone else’s labels, except His. He called us and labelled us — we are His! That is the only label I want and need for my life. How great is Our God!? Even after we set out in refusing Him, He still loves us and always will. He loves us always and unconditionally, and we are His — now and forever. AMEN!

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