I was texting recently with a good friend of mine. She sent me a picture of a couple of paragraphs in a book she is reading. As we shot a few quick messages back and forth to each other, I felt the Lord plant a seed of truth in my heart. He reminded me that He has chosen me. But it is entirely up to me whether or not I live as one who is chosen.

As I have talked and written about before, I am, at times, a mess of insecurity. But as God continues to work on my heart to help me live with the belief that I am valuable, it forces me to wrestle with old habits of staying small and seeking the approval of others. I fear criticism and rejection. And when that fear triumphs over certainty in God, I make the decision that who the world chooses, and whether or not it chooses me, is more important than the promise that God has already chosen me.

However, if I trust that God has chosen me as His own, and make that my focus, then any worldly disapproval that comes my way is secondary to His acceptance. Sure, it stings when my ideas meet with furrowed brows or dismissive words. Sure, it raises doubts when something I offer isn’t well received. But it cannot touch the unchangeable truth that I am a chosen child of God. His Spirit lives inside me. And no one and nothing can ever reach that place. No darkness can hide it. No shame can penetrate it. And no setback can minimize it.

I recently attended a conference in North Carolina. One of the vendors there was Fashion & Compassion. The organization helps vulnerable women by teaching them to make jewelry that supplements their income. On their display table, there were many pretty things. I admired several, but I came home with one piece. It is a simple silver necklace on a long chain that says “chosen.”

The funny thing is, I had decided to get a similar one that said, “loved.” But when I went back to make the purchase, the “loved” ones were sold out. I had noticed the “chosen” one first, but I wasn’t sure I believed it. And if I’m going to wear something around my neck, I need to believe it. So I stood there trying to decide if I was bold enough to wear “chosen.” “Loved” seemed softer or more acceptable somehow. But “chosen”? Was that taking things too far? As I held it in my hand and prepared to claim it, I felt tears welling up in my eyes. And as I walked away from the cashier with my new treasure, the tears slid down my cheeks. I lifted a declaration prayer that I would be intentional about believing that He saw me this way.

I made a choice that evening to claim the decision God has already made about His love for me. I am chosen. And that will not change regardless of the response I make to His choice. But what if I live it out? What if I wake up each day, thank Him for choosing me, and live like one whose security lies not in the response of the world but in the love of a Father? Yeah, I want to be that woman.