At work today I kept thinking about my previous entry on Ephesians. And about free will, being chosen, etc. and I had some additional thoughts. The problem with calvinism to me, besides the whole ...I believe in true & real free will...is that when we believe some were just picked out and chosen and designed to be chosen without having any ability to choose on their own....then it seems that anybody else who hasn't yet chosen Christ begins to think, well I must just be not chosen. And then the people that are christians, these chosen ones, begin to get prideful thinking when they see non-christians, well they're just not chosen. I guess calvinism would make sense if our humanness wouldn't mess it up --- but it does. That viewpoint inherently turns the focus and attention on people rather than on Christ. It puts the chosen "above" the unchosen and takes away the grace available to ALL. The more I think about it - I just really don't agree with the calvinist view on this issue. I believe in free will!
But there was another thought I had about this "chosen" idea. I think that it's awesome and clearly divine how God designs our earthly families and friendship circles. The people who He knows will choose Christ at a young age - He always makes sure to put around others who haven't decided to follow Christ yet. Example: Brandon, my husband who was brought up in the same environment as his 4 brothers for some reason chose Christ. I believe that his placement in the family and environment he grew up in, is a perfect example of God's hands and perfectly orchestrated weaving of our lives!! Obviously Brandon was put into his family line for a reason.
So many times Brandon and I have had conversations like... why us? We don't get how our siblings and us could all sit through the same sermons, same youth groups, same experiences.....but it was different for us. How come we decided to "buy in" to all we heard. How come it penetrated our hearts? How come we just believed in what we were hearing and the eyes of our hearts were open to it. I believe that God chose to open our hearts when He did.... so that He could use us to be catalysts for those around us. We were chosen to have our hearts open and we thank God we said YES. I believe that because we said YES to God, because we allowed Him to soften our hearts --- that that is God's "in" with our circle. He made us receptive to Him, not because we are any "better" than others - but He needed to choose at least one person in every circle of influence out there..so why not us? In love, we were predestined to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ. (5) For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight. (4). We are holy and blameless because we said YES to Jesus. and I pray that all of those around me that haven't yet....will say YES as well!!!!