Then King David went in and sat before the LORD, and he said: “Who am I, O LORD God, and what is my family, that you have brought me this far? And as if this were not enough in your sight, O God, you have spoken about the future of the house of your servant. You have looked on me as though I were the most exalted of men, O LORD God. 1 Chronicles 17:16-17.
How does God see me? That was the question I was left with as I read these verses from 1 Chronicles this morning. They are King David’s response to a message from God that the prophet Nathan has just delivered to him — a promise that there was a wonderful future in store for him and his family — and David’s response is one of an amazed “Why me? Are you mixing me up with someone else? What have I done that you should treat me so well. You’re treating me as someone special.” But that is, of course, the point. David is someone special in the eyes of the God who sees the end from the beginning but David doesn’t yet know that he is. And the whole testimony of Scripture is that the same can be said of me and of you. I — Neil Booth — am so special that “the Son of God loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).
A couple of days ago, a cousin of mine who lives in Silsden sent me a cutting from her local newspaper, the Craven Herald, that contained an archive photograph of Class 5A of Keighley Boys Grammar School in 1957. There I was, on the front row, looking at the camera, aged 15, and knowing nothing of who I would be 50 years from then; but God knew, and He knows what I will be in his eternity when he completes his work of turning me into the person he designed me to be before time began. And the promise is that the person I am to become will actually resemble Jesus! St Paul says that “we … are being transformed into his [Jesus’] likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit” 2 Corinthians 3:18. So God treats me accordingly. He watches over me and cares for me. He rescues me from trouble. He showers me with blessings that I so do not deserve that like David I have to say: “You have looked on me as though I were the most exalted of men, O LORD God”. Because, of course, Jesus is “the most exalted of men” and God looks on me as one who will be like him!
Thank you, Father, for seeing me not as I am but as, by your grace, I one day will be. Help me to cooperate with your Spirit within me as this day he seeks to make me more like Jesus. Amen.