I think it is hard for us to even imagine how precious we are to our Father. All we often see are our faults, failings, shortcomings. mistakes and sins. We look at ourselves and find it hard to believe that God could love anyone like us. But he does. He has most certainly poured out his affection on us even when we continue to reject him. He loves us so much that he had decided on a plan to rescue us even before the first day of creation.
We often hear that before we were born God knew us but according to Ephesians 1 he has known us before creation and he loved us. He predetermined that he would rescue us. The Word of God refers to it as predestined or predestination, which some people read as preselected. But the meaning of this word is describing our Father's will that all of us would be saved. It is his will that everyone ever born would be rescued from their destination of destruction. It is his will but our choice:
In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will ... (Ephesians 1:11)
That's something, isn't it? I am amazed by it every time I try to wrap my brain around it. Our Father knew before time began of every word, thought, emotion and action of mine that would offend and hurt him but, like the best Father in heaven and earth, he still chose to love me. He chose to forgive me. He chose to make a way where there was no way for me to come to him. This was his plan and he worked out everything in history and time so that I would have that opportunity to respond to him. Amazing.
There is purpose in it all. There should be fruit that results from this great effort by our God. There should be a natural thing that is produced from this great love. That thing is our response and the response of all the heavenly beings who are looking in on the matter in amazement. Our response can only be one thing:
... in order that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. (Ephesians 1:12)
Praise is what naturally flows out of hearts of gratitude for a Father who has demonstrated such great love for his enemy, which is what we were. He loved us as if we were his children even though we were in rebellion to him. How can we not glorify our God? How can we not spend our days worshipping such a Father and the instrument through whom he rescued us, our Lord Jesus, the Christ? All of heaven looks in on this matter and respond in praise, glorifying God for such a generous act of love, mercy and grace.
If you are struggling with anything this day, even if it is with loving yourself, then remember this: our Father loved you before time began. He loved you so much that he worked out a plan to rescue you before there was a single plant on this earth or a fish in the sea. You may not be all that old but God's knowledge of you is and he loves you. He worked his plan for you. He sacrificed, paid the price, and gave his all just so you would have the opportunity to know him. He loves you, forgives you and adopts you as his own. Now isn't that something worth celebrating?