Heathdale flower 17th October 2019

Chosen & Empowered

A young Ross Grace never got picked first for lunchtime basketball, until one fateful day when he just couldn't miss. It's one thing to be chosen, but another to be empowered to perform the task.

Heathdale flower

Many years ago, when I was a student in Year 9, I participated in a year-level lunchtime inter-homeroom Basketball Competition. I was not particularly known for my sporting prowess at this stage of my life; I tended to be the kid always ‘chosen’ at the end to simply help ‘make up the numbers’! In the second game of this competition, surprisingly, I played an unbelievable game where I couldn’t do a thing wrong! I won each contested ball I went for, defended strongly and even scored 18 points, including 3 three-pointers. My personal success in this game was so significant that I was nearly carried off the court at the end of the game because we happened to beat the team everyone thought was going to win the competition. From now on I was one of the first to be selected and the other kids now viewed me differently. I was no longer the kid who just helped make up the numbers, I was now the kid who others wanted on their team! The memory of this significant moment came flooding back to me recently as I read the following passage of when God called (or chose) His Servant.

“Here is my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen one in whom I delight; I will put my Spirit on him, and he will bring justice to the nations. He will not shout or cry out, or raise his voice in the streets. A bruised reed he will not break, and a smouldering wick he will not snuff out. In faithfulness he will bring forth justice; he will not falter or be discouraged till he establishes justice on earth. In his teaching the islands will put their hope." – Isaiah 42:1-4 (NIV)

God says of His chosen one, that “I will put my Spirit on him”. It is one thing to be chosen but it is another thing to be empowered to perform the task.

As we read a passage like Isaiah 42, it is important to remember that being a servant in biblical times was not necessarily held with the same low esteem it is today. To be a servant in biblical times didn’t necessarily mean that you were a lowly slave or a dogsbody. But depending on the standing of the one you served, you could find yourself in quite prestigious surrounds — such as in the Royal Court! In biblical times your standing as a servant depended purely on whose servant you were. In other words, your master’s dignity and stature also determined the servant’s stature.

To be known or called the Lord’s servant is an incredible blessing. In Genesis 26:24 we read that Abraham was called to be God’s servant. So too, was Moses in Exodus 14:31, as well as King David in 2 Samuel 3:18 and so were the prophets as in Amos 3:7. For those called/chosen servants of the Lord, it didn’t matter to God if they were resplendent figures, decked out in fine robes and jewels or not. What mattered was that, as a servant of the Lord, each was not only chosen by God but also empowered by the Holy Spirit to do His work. The power of the Spirit enables the servant to represent The Master as well as reassure him or her of the Lord’s authority on what he or she had been called to do.

As our Year 12s conclude their time at Heathdale, the prayer of the Staff and I, is that they come to know and understand the incredible privilege of having God’s powerful calling upon their lives. As they move from this season of Secondary Schooling into the next, may they be energised, empowered and enabled by this blessing of God’s presence as they seek to serve and honour Him in every sphere of their life.
Our hope is that our Year 12s come to understand that they are indeed chosen and anointed, they will know that the power of the Spirit enables them to serve and represent their Master and be reassured of the Lord’s authority on what they are called to do.


Ross Grace
Executive Principal