“You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies. You honor me by anointing my head with oil . . .”—Psalm 23:5 (NLT)
I often pray with a pen and notebook in hand. Mostly due to my inability to focus for more than five minutes unless I’m writing my thoughts and prayers down. Recently, I looked over my prayers and found a common question nervously laced throughout the pages: “Lord, are you pleased with me?” Could the only One who sees into the depth of my wicked heart really be pleased to offer me His nearness?
I realized then that I was still unsure of His answer. So, I resolved to ask—again—but this time I would listen. He spoke to me and said, “My love for you is unchanging—even in your weakness and even as you sin. My wrath has already been poured out upon Jesus. You and I are at peace.” Could this really be so? It seems too kind, too good, and too merciful to believe that the only person worthy of sitting at God’s table prepared a place for you and me. But that’s exactly what He did.
Jesus drank the cup of God’s wrath, so that we may drink the cup of His honor at His table, “that we might receive the adoption as sons . . . and if a son, then an heir through God (Galatians 4:5-7 NASB).” His wrath no longer belongs to us. Instead, God anoints us with oil as His children, as though we are His firstborn sons. The anointing of oil in the biblical context marks someone or something as set apart.
First-born sons were often anointed with a special blessing. They were set apart to receive a double portion of their father’s wealth and authority. But children have no control over their birthing order; they just receive what the Lord ordained. In the same way, we are heirs of the riches of His love and righteousness, and it’s only by His mercy that He bestows such wealth upon us!
As we receive His anointing, God’s love will be made known throughout the earth because it sets us apart. It rests upon us like a fragrant oil on our heads. Our brokenness and sin are a testimony of the strength of His covenant with us. For when we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us (1 John 1:9). Our cup runs over with His love! How gracious is He to honor us at His table! How pleased He is because of Christ to call us sons and daughters!
DIG: Is God asking you to separate yourself from anything or anyone? If so, obey Him today! His counsel is your protection.
DISCOVER: Choose one aspect of being set apart to meditate on today. Receive this calling on your life as His son or daughter and walk in it.
DISPLAY: Make yourself accountable by sharing with someone what God is asking you to separate from and ask them to hold you accountable to it.
Nia is our social media + web content coordinator, as well as a worship leader and writer. She is fascinated with art and the powerful vessel it is for the Gospel. Learn more about Nia.