For some reason, that story always stuck with me. It's not that God favors certain people. It's that God Knows His own. He begs for the foolish, the wicked, the blind, to know Him, but it is ultimately their choice. In the meantime, those people who are His children are "exceedingly precious" to Him.
I love that term. Can you imagine what would happen to the world if everyone believed, I mean really believed deep down that they were "exceedingly precious"? How many problems are caused by people who grow up in unloving homes, who feel like they never measure up, who feel they are weird, unloved, unwanted. Who believe they evolved from an ape and therefore are just a batch of molecules, an accident with no purpose or meaning, who feel as though they are just another face in a sea of faces far more important then they are?
I don't know about you but I still have trouble believing I am exceedingly precious to God. But there have been those moments, brief and awesome, when it sinks in just a little bit--those times alone with God when I truly can feel His love and the light touch of His hand on my forehead, His kiss on my cheek. Oh, what sweet bliss. For it is in those moments when I know that I am safe, that nothing can touch me, nothing can harm me outside of my Father's will. It is in those moments that I feel loved beyond measure, like I have truly come home.
Here's some other things in the Bible God calls precious
God's wisdom is precious Proverbs 3:15
God's thoughts are precious Psalms 139:17
Jerusalem, God's holy city is precious Micah 4:8
Jesus is precious Isaiah 28:16
Jewels and gold are labled precious many times in the Bible
The truth is precious 2 Tim 1:14
Faith is precious 1 Peter 1:7
The blood of Christ is precious 1 Peter 1:19
God's promises are precious 2 Peter 1:4
I don't have trouble believing those things are precious. But me?
In Daniel 10:19, the angel, Gabriel spoke to Daniel and said:
“Don’t be afraid,” he said, “for you are very precious to God. Peace! Be encouraged! Be strong!”
Now before you tell me that Daniel was some kind of spiritual stud. No way! He was no better than you or I. In fact, Jesus himself declared that of all the men born to women, John the Baptist was the greatest, but those of us in the Kingdom of God are even greater than he was. Who's in the Kingdom of God? His children. Those of us who believe.
I challenge you this week to write the words "Exceedingly Precious" on a sticky note and put it somewhere you will see it often. Maybe some bad things have happened to you recenly, or perhaps God has not answered an important prayer, and lately you haven't felt very loved or important to Him at all. Ask God to show you how precious you are to him. Remember it. Believe it, and allow God's love to melt away all your fears, your reservations, your despair.