Summary: A message explaining how God chose us, and what is means for our lives today
CCCAG August 23rd, 2020
Scripture- Romans 8:28-39
When I went to mechanic school in the military, it was at Ft. Jackson SC in the summer. We took a bus from the reception area to our barracks, but we couldn’t pull right up to them because the roads in front of the barracks we're under construction. We ended up being about ¾ of a mile away.
What that meant for us is that we had to carry both our personal bags and our military bags from the drop off spot into our barracks. For a 19 or 20 year old it's not a big deal. You'll work up a little bit of a sweat but otherwise it's no factor.
Before we had driven over, they had given us our room assignments and our buddy assignments. One of the things they drill into you in the military is teamwork and one of the ways they do that is by assigning you another person that while you are in training- you do everything with this person. You rise and you fall on each other’s achievements and are largely graded together when it comes to the more practical areas of whatever your training to be. They call them battle buddy’s, and like it or not, that’s your best friend for the duration of the training. My battle buddy was named Chuck, and on the ride over I had discovered that he grew up working on cars and trucks, so this school would be a breeze for him, which was lucky for me because I barely knew how to change a tire.
Unfortunately, Chuck had twisted his knee and was on medical profile- meaning couldn’t carry more than 10 pounds or walk/march/run for more than 50 yards. Chuck and his personal bag was getting a ride in a golf cart to the barracks, and it fell to me as his battle buddy to carry his military gear along with my own. All told, it was probably about 130 pounds of stuff to carry, for a guy who weighed 150 pounds soaking wet.
We started out, and I’m struggling under the weight of all this gear. I’ve always been more of a weightlifter than a runner, so cardio wasn’t my strongest attribute and I started to fall behind a little.
Of course, that got the attention of a drill sergeant who began profanely reeducate me about the importance of keeping up, even if, as he said, “I just have a couple of extra pounds to carry”
I’m not going to lie- it got me mad. My pride welled up and I got a little “Rocky” snarl-the Rocky theme song playing in my head and pushed myself almost to a run and passed the formation, leading them toward the barracks. I ran past the barracks before the drill sergeant, who was now laughing, called me back.
We got into formation in front of the barracks, all breathing heavy, and soaked with sweat from the march over in the South Carolina summer.
The drill sergeant went to the front of the formation, and called out, “PFC Oscar, drop your stuff and get up here”
I’m thinking, now what? I’m going to get smoked for being obstinate and passing the formation…which I kind of deserved.
Instead, I felt him take my arm and wrap something around it. I looked down and saw a black armband with staff sergeant insignia on it.
The drill sergeant informed everyone I was now the platoon leader, and informed me I was directly in command and responsible for everyone in my platoon, and I was to select the squad leaders over the next 24hrs and report back to him.
I was chosen. There were bigger, stronger, and more experienced people in my platoon, but I was singled out and chosen to lead them.
Today we are going to finish our study of Romans chapter 8.
One of the big ideas we get from this part of scripture is the fact that you and I were Chosen by God. Chosen to receive adoption, chosen to receive forgiveness, chosen to participate in His Kingdom here on earth, and chosen to receive the Holy Spirit as a deposit for the things to come.
With that in mind, let’s read our scripture for this morning, Romans 8:28-39.
28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.
31 What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all — how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? 33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died — more than that, who was raised to life — is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written: