“The seventh time around, when the priests sounded the trumpet blast, Joshua commanded the army, ‘Shout! For the LORD has given you the city!'”
Joshua 6:16 (NIV)
As a child, being the teacher’s pet was a mixed blessing. On the one hand, you would get to do things like run special errands or be given fun projects to work on, but sometimes peers resent children who have their “head above the parapet”. I’ve noticed something similar at work – my managers always appreciate my work, and my peers come to me for help but I see the eye-rolls, oh there she goes again too.
When I was a student, a lot of the recognition I received came from effort: I’d read more books than anyone in my class, or I’d stayed back in recess to help another kid with multiplication. As an employee, while I’m blessed to be employed in a way that uses my natural abilities, it is a similar model, I offer my expertise happily and freely, I work hard, my manager and my peers benefit and I get recognized.
Favor is different. You can’t impress God. We are saved by grace not works, so that none of us turn into Pharisees. I think favor works on a similar model: you get favor because you ask for it, or God thinks you need it – not because you’re a star student.
Favor means that I get to start my new job on their second quarter day, with first quarter benefits – nothing I did allowed me to receive this, it was all about favor. Favor allowed me to delay a notice date until after bonuses were paid! Favor means my pre-employment check got done, even with hard-to-find consulting information and overseas stuff! Favor means I find stuff on sale. Favor means I can walk without fear making decisions, because God will guide me and help me, making sure things turn out how He wants them to. And that is a lot better than I could do, because I will always be surprised. He never is.
Favor means my children are liked by their teachers, learning to be Godly in a time of corrupt culture. Favor means we have enough. I am so blessed by Favor and the most amazing thing of all is that I have done nothing to deserve it.