“For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world…” – Eph. 1:4

Tony Lucas was beaming.  Not just smiling, not just grinning, absolutely BEAMING from ear to ear… the kind of smile that you get when you realize that you just got picked first in gym class, even though you’re not at the top of the athletic food chain.  Tony had that look that you get when you realize that after years of faithfully purchasing a raffle ticket at the office Christmas party, you finally won the vacation trip… the kind of look when you peel the Monopoly game piece off a McDonald’s french fry box and realize you just got Boardwalk.  Tony was beaming, because he had been chosen.

The arena wasn’t exactly packed for the concert that night, but the music was loud and the band was full of energy, and halfway through the show, it was time.  As the beginning of the next song played, the lead singer called out “I want you guys to give a big welcome to my brand new friend, TONY LUCAS”, and the crowd erupted.  And then there he was.  The singer reached down from the stage, and up came Tony from the crowd, on to the stage, into the lights, up to the mic, because he had been chosen.

Tony had participated in a singing contest… kind of an “American Idol” imitation, where the winner would get to sing a song with the band.  He had done all right, but hung his head, defeated, as he left the audition stage, somehow knowing that he hadn’t done it.  He had given his best, but it hadn’t worked out.  He just knew he had lost.

Then came the announcement, ringing over the PA system in the crowded center court of the shopping mall.

“We’re going to be calling some people back to sing another selection.  If you hear your name please come up to the desk again.”

“Tony Lucas”.

As Tony heard his name, he knew it, this was it, his chance at redemption!  He came, he sang, he qualified, and by the end of the week when the votes were tallied, he had won his moment in the spotlight.  Tony, had been chosen.

I watched him carefully as he stood on the stage with the band, the music blaring, the singer standing in the background as this unknown, this local amateur sang the song, and through all the other distractions in the hall that night, his smile cut through.  His voice cut through.  His heart cut through.  Tony had a joy and a vibrancy that only comes in those few, fabulous moments in life when a person realizes, they have been chosen.

That night, Tony Lucas smiled and danced and sang with all of his heart, because he… had… been… chosen.

There is something special about being chosen…

Phillip Gonzales
4/26/08