Grace Looks Amazing On You

Day 1 of 5 • This day’s reading


Claim Your Name

Recently I was walking a wooded path I know by heart, with my earbuds in and the music moving me along. I looked up for a moment, and what I saw made me stop. The trees were just asking to be noticed. It was early fall, and the colors were arresting—some still gloriously green, others bright yellows and brilliant oranges. Each one showing off in its own way.

As I stood there, still and quiet, watching the branches sway back and forth, the words of Isaiah 61:3 rolled around in my mind: “They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord” (niv). I had memorized this verse long ago, and ever since, being an oak of righteousness has been branded on my brain. Oaks are no joke. They are deeply rooted and distinctly tall. They aren’t easily shaken.

The spectacular oaks I was entranced by are just what God has called us: His own doing. A planting of the Lord. Can we take a minute and think about God kneeling down, tenderly pushing earth around, securing a spot in the soil, and planting us just so? It’s such a sweet image. You can’t plant something without noticing it. Without tenderness. Without love.

Of course, when we are newly planted as sweet, small saplings we aren’t strong right away. Nothing solid grows strong overnight. But God’s growth plan is slow, steady, and sure. He intends for us to have deep roots, to hold fast in the heat, to stand strong in the storm, which only happens when we are watered with grace, truth, and time.

It is then we grow—with purpose and by amazing grace. And every season we pull through? We are only stronger for it. Our purpose unfolds the deeper we grow, year after year.

So, dearest one, claim your name and stand tall in it. You are an oak of righteousness, the planting of the Lord. And because you are hand-planted, you can rest secure in God’s rich soil of love. 

Grace Reflection: Pray with me, “God, thank You for naming me and planting me with love and care and purpose. Thank You that I am not given a small, puny identity but a tall, strong name. Help me to claim that name today. Amen.”