Listen: Chris Witts presents Morning Devotions.
How many times have you said to yourself: I’m such a loser! I’m a fat, stupid, ugly, I can’t do anything right. Nobody thinks I’m any good—I’m just plain worthless?
Have you ever felt that way? In one way or another, you probably have. Sometimes we feel worthless because of some mistake we made, or because of what someone has said. These feelings can be devastating and influence our lives for a long time.
Unfortunately, much of the way we live and think is about judging others through two things: beauty and intelligence. If you’re attractive, good looking and have high intelligence, you’re judged to be successful. If you live in the right town, seen to be doing well and talented, you’ve got it made. These are common ways we think.
At school, if you hang out with the best and brightest, you’ll get on, you’re part of the ‘in crowd’. But make sure you don’t have pimples or are overweight. And at home, parents can destroy their kids self-esteem by calling them ‘stupid’ or ‘dummy’. If you say that enough times your child will believe it and learn to live down to the label attached to him or her.
How unfortunate it is that our world is superficial and wrong in its way of judging the worth of human beings. But if we think about it seriously, there is no reason to feel like that.
Our Worth Comes from God
There is no reason for me to feel worthless—there is no reason for you to feel worthless. God’s Word tells me that no matter how worthless you or I might feel, God tells us otherwise: “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!” (1 John 3:1 – NIV). He says, You are my child, and you are worth something. The Bible says that God sees us first and foremost ‘as his children’. God does not want our main image of ourselves to be negative.
Robert Schuller says you have self-esteem, a sense of dignity and worth because you were made in God’s image. Maybe you’ve heard the phrase God made me, and God don’t make no junk! There is an important point missing here. There were only two perfect human beings: Adam and Eve—they were sinless, perfect, free of junk. But after they sinned, they lost dignity, their worth plummeted. They were disobedient, and sin polluted them as it has polluted us—but something wonderful has happened when Jesus came into our world and God poured out his love through him to us.
John 3:16 says, “God loved the world so much He gave His only son so that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life”. We were heading for trouble, but God rescued us in Jesus Christ and he sees us as a precious child for whom Jesus died on the cross. Some old wisdom says, “God does not love us because we are valuable, but we are valuable because God loves us.” So God’s love does not fluctuate, and so our value as people does not lessen.
When we make a lot of mistakes; when we gain too much weight; if our friends leave us; if we grow older and lose energy: Remember that our worth comes from God, not from within ourselves.
God’s Perspective on Worth
I think knowing how God judges worth actually changes our perspective on worth.
A. It starts with the way you judge yourself, how you measure your own self-esteem:
- Do you see yourself as unattractive, ugly? Do you look in the mirror and go, Oh, no!
God says, Look at my beautiful child, dressed in Christ’s clothes.
- Are you not as intelligent as you’d like? Do you feel like a dummy? Ignorant?
God says, Look at my brilliant child, filled with the wisdom and knowledge of Christ!
- Do you believe your personality is dull?
God says, Look at my exciting child, who has the joy of the gospel in his heart!
- Do you feel you are poor? Do you wish you had the money of the rich and famous?
God says, Look at my wealthy child, possessing all the glorious riches of Christ.
- Are you getting old? Forever conscious of your age?
God says, Look at my vibrant young child, who has brand new life each day in Christ.
We need always bear in mind that we are children of God—this single fact makes you extremely precious and valuable.
B. Secondly, we need to look beyond ourselves—God loves all the world:
- How do you judge others around you? Do you see them as rivals and compare yourself with them?
No need for that—we are all the children of God and part of his family. As a family we work together, strengthening others.
C. Finally, the way to judge worth is always to be based in Christ:
- Next time you think, I’m a loser, remember you are winner in Christ.
- Next time you are upset with someone else, remember that person is a child of God, and the Lord loves you both.
- Next time you are tempted to look with scorn or distaste at another person, no matter who they are, remind yourself of God’s love for them.
Children of God, you are worth something! I am worth something—all of us are worth something.
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