Wednesday, July 21, 2010

CALLING THEM 'FAVORITES'?

John 13:1, 22-23, 34-35
1 It was just before the Passover Feast.
Jesus knew that the time had come for Him to leave this world and go to the Father.
Having loved His own who were in the world,
He now showed them the full extent of His love.
22 His disciples stared at one another, at a loss to know which of them He meant. 23 One of them, the disciple whom Jesus loved, was reclining next to Him.
34 "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you love one another."

John 21:7a
Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, "It is the Lord!"
Have you ever had a grandmother who played "favorites" with her grandchildren? Maybe an aunt or uncle, or a grandfather, played 'favorites' in your family?
Perhaps a parent you had may have 'favored' one child over another during your lifetime
which didn't make you feel very loved, much less the 'favorite' of the children.
Allow me share a true story with you. Let this real life story paint a picture of
how our Father [God] sees those who are called His children.
Perhaps it will alter your view of playing 'favorites' with your children
- but in a way you never expected!
Back in May, I attended the funeral service of my friend's husband, Ray,
who had fought a hard battle with cancer.
Having lost my own husband to cancer, I wanted to be there to support the family.
Ray was a Jewish believer who had known Yeshua
many years of his life as His Savior and Lord.
Ray and his wife had three children, all married
with children of their own.
I lost count of how many there were.
The service began as a celebration of Ray's life
and being the humorous man that he was
there was tale after tale of practical jokes and stories
that could hold our attention for hours.
It was obvious how much this man had touched many lives all over the room, with his humor and his deep abiding love for others.
But~ when I listened to each of Ray's children, share about their father,
each one said the same thing,
"I was my daddy's favorite child."
Each gave testimony after testimony of how and why this father called 'them' his 'favorite'.
Then, after all of the children had shared, several of the young grandchildren got up and shared about life with their grandfather.
A 9 year old got up.
"I was my Grandpa's favorite."
Then, from another grandchild, about 12 years old standing tall,
a story soon emerged about how her grandpa made her feel like
'she was the only one in the world
who carried his love for her.'
How could this be, you might ask as I did? How could there be more than one favorite? I tell you that each one in that family was so special to Ray that he was likened unto our heavenly Father - who because of Jesus - loves each of us like that. Ray never called one child his favorite without calling the others that too! In Ray's eyes - each of them really was his favorite.
In God the Father's eyes, each of us is His 'favored' child as well.
John, the Beloved disciple, knew he was loved by Jesus and he told anyone and everyone - just like Ray's kids did! And like John, the Beloved, they believed it too!
In our society we've been taught to never play 'favorites' with our children or grandchildren. But after hearing that family's testimony from another perspective, I'm going to consider this carefully and put into action that same kind of 'favored love' toward my children and grandchildren that our heavenly Father lavishes on us.
How about you? Will you play 'favorites', giving each one your 'favored love'?
Choosing JOY,
Stephanie

11 comments:

D.J. Hughes said...

I've always thought it interesting that John CALLED HIMSELF the "disciple whom Jesus loved." Jesus never singled John out and actually said that He loved John more than the others. John just knew how much he was loved by Jesus.

You're right, just like the grandfather you mentioned here, God loves each and every one of us with the same love. After all, Christ died for ALL of us - not just his "favorites." Thank you, Jesus.

Yaya Yarns said...

You know, this has always been a fear of mine, that one child or grandchild would feel that I favored another. If I live and love as HE did, then they will all feel favored!

Thanks for sharing!

Warren Baldwin said...

Neat post, Stephanie.

Melanie said...

Yes!!! So very true.
BTW, I am HIS favorite.

Deborah Ann said...

Too funny. I wrote a devotional on this very subject. I was so jealous of John being Jesus' favorite, that it nearly drove me insane. I know, I know. We are ALL His favorites!

Debra@Common Ground said...

Love this thought, and it's so very true! We are each favored in His eyes.
Debra

Elizabeth Mahlou said...

Great post!

BTW, I am informing followers of my Blest Atheist blog that the blog went down. I replaced it with 100th Lamb (www.emahlou.blogspot.com). I explain why there.

Sharon Sloan - Joy In The Truth said...

I am so thankful we are all the apple of His eye. :)

Sonja said...

I love this Stephanie! I have a friend who had 6 sisters and each one KNEW they were their dad's favorite!

I love it that I know I am, and you are, and each of us are... His favorite!!

Hugs!

Sonja

Patrina's Pencil said...

Favored Love.... I love that!
This is an incredible legacy of love to a man that was called according to HIS purpose. How well He lived and loved out that purpose. His legacy is still affecting lives.

Thanks for sharing, friend
Patrina <")>><

Edie said...

I always knew I was HIS favorite. :D

What a great post Stephanie! Yes it's me, stopping by for a minute to say hello. I hope you're doing well. Have a great weekend!