February 14, 2023
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“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you.” John 15:9a (NIV)
For most of my life, I felt like I was in second place, not quite as good as everybody else.
I was a cheerleader my junior year in high school, but I was an alternate. That meant I was on the squad and did everything the other girls did, but it was clear I wasn’t quite as good as the other cartwheeling, high-jumping pompom shakers. Barely made it. Last one chosen.
When I applied to college, I was put on a waitlist. I got in because someone else dropped out at the last minute. Barely made it. Last one chosen.
Even when I had to serve jury duty, I was the alternate! I had to stay and listen for an entire week just in case someone had to drop out, and I didn’t even get a vote. Barely made it. Last one chosen.
I wonder if you’ve ever felt that you were an “also ran” … an afterthought … someone who barely made it … the last one chosen. If so, you’re not alone.
One thing I love about Jesus’ disciple John is that he knew without a shadow of a doubt he was not second place to anyone when it came to Jesus. He referred to himself as “the one Jesus loved.” John knew he was Jesus’ favorite. And so was Peter, James, Andrew, Phillip and all the rest. And so am I. And so are you.
Of course, John wasn’t really saying that of all the people in the world, Jesus loved him the most. But perhaps he was saying that of all the things people could say about him, all the adjectives they could use to describe him, all the names they could call him, “the one Jesus loved” was the only description that mattered.
Check out these verses and note how John described himself:
Do those verses make you smile? I'm a bit amused by John’s confidence. But suppose you and I lived like that … My name is Sharon, the one Jesus loves.
Go ahead and put your name in the blank: My name is ________________, the one Jesus loves.
You were not chosen as an alternate, an “also ran,” someone who barely made it or was the last one in. You were chosen because you are Jesus’ favorite, and so am I! Jesus says this about you: “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you” (John 15:9a). That’s some serious love right there.
So the next time you feel less-than, say to yourself exactly what John said: “I am the one Jesus loves.”
Father, sometimes I can feel so mediocre, but I know that’s not how You want me to live. Your Word says I am chosen, holy, dearly loved, set apart — equipped by You, empowered by the Holy Spirit, and enveloped in Jesus Christ. I am the one Jesus loves. Help me live like I believe it. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
One of our favorite things is Sharon Jaynes’ book Enough: Silencing the Lies that Steal Your Confidence. If you’ve ever struggled with feeling less-than or like you just don’t measure up, then this book is for you. Learn how to recognize the lies, reject the lies, and replace the lies with truth to trade inferiority and insecurity for courage and confidence.
Click here for Sharon's free downloadable booklet of “70 Common Lies We Tell Ourselves and the Biblical Truths to Replace Them.”
Ephesians 2:4-5, “But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved …” (ESV)
Read the following verses and note how God feels about His beloved children: 1 John 4:9-11, Romans 5:8 and 1 John 3:1.
What would it look like for you to live like you believed those verses are true in your life? If you believe these verses today, comment below and say, “I am one Jesus loves!”
© 2023 by Sharon Jaynes. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
P.O. Box 3189
Matthews, NC 28106