He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.
For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the Firstborn among many brethren.
The subject of predestination has been a hot topic among theologians for centuries, and I am no expert. Nevertheless and repeatedly, God calls His people 'chosen' and 'elect.' The relationship between His predestination and our salvation, His foreknowledge and our free will, His giving and our receiving is an intentional mystery.*
Maybe if we understood it right now, we would be tempted to judge--labeling some people as unworthy. But judgment is neither our right nor our job. Jesus is clear. We're told to spread the Good News of salvation to everyone. Earth's graduation decisions are His alone.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: In this mean time, be thankful for your appointment to God's Acting Academy. It's the real golden ticket. Your invitation was predetermined, and your tuition was prepaid. You've been called up into an all-volunteer army of performing saints. Your stage was thousands of years in the making. But how can you be sure this invitation is for you?
1) You have the talent to act, model, sing, dance and entertain an audience. You have a charismatic gift that attracts people to you--like Jesus did. He stood on the stage of a mountain. He sat in the amphitheater of a boat. Large crowds followed Him. Talents are a gift given for a purpose: to be seen and multiplied for His glory: His brilliant illumination by your brilliant performance.**
2) You're a natural leader. You're destined to be a role model: to lead people by word and example--specifically His Word and His example played out in the theater of your life. The size of your audience is irrelevant: it may be dozens to millions, depending on your level of humility. Because God exalts the humble--proportionately in my opinion.
3) You know that you know that you know. It's a call of the Holy Spirit confirmed by your God-given talents.
What happens if you refuse your appointment, drop out of God's student body, or hide your talents--from laziness, stubbornness or fear? Re-read the Parable of the Talents. You don't want to go there. And if you have (or you know anyone who has), repent and get back in His lineup.
To Be Continued...
* Short article: 'What is predestination?' http://www.gotquestions.org/predestination.html
** The Parable of the Talents: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+25%3A14-30&version=NKJV
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Acting School series.