I mentioned Run With The Horses awhile back (“Perseverance in the morning“). It’s Eugene Peterson’s reflections on the biography of Jeremiah, a prophet appearing in the Hebrew Bible. (I’m reading Peterson again because the Sunday texts in the lectionary are from Jeremiah for the next few weeks.)
The book of Jeremiah starts with a little biography, a little chronology. About what you’d find on the back cover of a book.
And then God speaks:
“I’ve known you longer than your mother ever did. And I picked you.”
We struggle with that, a little. We think it must be Jeremiah that was picked, not everyone, not all of us.
We struggle with that, a little. We aren’t sure we want it to be true of everyone. The people that annoy us. The people that destroy us.
And yet, for all our struggle, it makes us think. What if it’s as true of us as for Jeremiah?
Peterson writes, “Before I was good for anything, God decided that I was good for what he was doing. . . . God is out to win the world in love and each person has been selected the way Jeremiah was, to be set apart to do it with him. He doesn’t wait to see how we turn out to decide to choose or not choose us.” Run, 40
It’s easy to get into theological debates. But what if God actually knows us? And what if our invitation is to be who we are, rather than constantly wishing we were measuring up to who someone else is? What if God actually does love us and wants to love others through us?