Listen to this devotional:
Romans 8:29-30 – For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the first-born among many brethren; and whom He predestined, these He also called; and whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified. (NASB)
As I was cleaning out a pumpkin to make a jack-o-lantern, I realized how much we are like these pumpkins.
I had looked over the whole bin of pumpkins, and chose the one that I wanted — the one that would do the job for me. God also chooses us. Even before He chooses us, He knows which one of us will do the job for Him that He wants us to do.
When the time came, I cut the top off the pumpkin. I looked inside and saw stringy material and seeds that were not needed for the specific purpose for which I had chosen the pumpkin in the first place. I cleaned all the seeds out and threw them away. They were detrimental to my purpose for the pumpkin. God looks inside us as well — into our hearts. He wants to take out all the harmful things in our lives — all the dependencies, all the addictions, all the seeds of sin.
1 John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (KJV)
After I had all the seeds cleaned out, I cut holes for eyes, nose, and mouth. I put a smiling face on him. I thought this is like us as well — once Jesus Christ has cleansed us of our sins, we are happy and rejoicing in the Lord.
Philippians 4:4 – Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! (NASB)
Then I put a light in the jack-o-lantern. You notice its name has changed. At the beginning it was a pumpkin. Now it is a jack-o-lantern. Our name also changes once Jesus has come in.
Isaiah 62:2 – Foreign countries will see your righteousness, and world leaders your glory. You'll get a brand-new name straight from the mouth of God. (MSG)
The light shone brightly through the facial features I had made. Is this not like us? Jesus' light shines through us — through our faces, through our smiling mouth, through our twinkling eyes. He has given us new life. He has given us a reason to smile. He has cleansed us — from the inside out. Praise God!
Prayer: Lord Jesus, help us remember that You have cleansed us. Help us to keep looking to You for the continual cleansing that we so desperately need. Thank You for the power in Your blood to cleanse us. Amen.