My daughter Kristen is a celebrity. Has been since birth. My wife and I follow her every move and document her moods, faces, and actions. We talk about her a lot and share stories about her funny habits or latest tastes. We give her our support and care, and do our best to protect her from harm. She has all our attention, even in the middle of the night, and we get up eager to see what she’ll do in the new day. Her laugh always makes us smile, and her tears spur us to remedy situations. To us, she’s the best.
However, Kristen has her moments—mealtime and bedtime struggles, and the occasional touching of forbidden objects, for example. We teach her to speak her requests clearly instead of just yelling, reward her for progress made, and sometimes penalize her for wrongdoing. She’s not perfect by any means, but she’s ours, and we adore her.
And you know what? I’m God’s celebrity. Flawed as I am, I bring joy to His Father’s heart. He follows my every move and loves to see what I’ll do next. He sends me encouraging messages through His Word, and protects me when I go out into the big world. He is righteous, and teaches me through my choices and ensuing consequences.1 By His sacrifice, He’s given me undying love, and He is available to hear my requests at any time, anywhere.2 The rewards He offers are priceless and eternal, and believe it or not, I’m His favored child. And so are you.3
In a world filled with ways to stay “close” to those we care about or have an interest in, it’s comforting to know that God needs no social network, no magazine columns, no status check to understand us. He knew us before we were even conceived, and will keep us close to Him forever. We’re special to Him, and He has a plan for us. As my daughter warms my heart every time she calls “Papa!” so is our Father’s heart touched when we call out to Him.4 No matter whether you feel valued or not, to Him, you’re the best!
God carries your picture in His wallet.—Tony Campolo (b. 1935)