Thursday, March 30, 2006

Judging by Appearances

Have you ever made a purchase at a grocery store and received a handful of change? When you looked at the change in your hand you saw a coin that was unrecognizable. You didn’t really want it but because of the people in line you slipped it into your pocket anyway. It might be foreign or domestic a penny or a dime. You just couldn’t tell at the time.

This happened to me too. When I saw the coin I said to myself “I don’t want this it’s good for nothing”. I could barely make out the image of President Roosevelt, ok, so it’s a dime. All scuffed up and gouged like it had lain on the highway for years until perhaps a little child found it and spent it with joy on a piece of candy. The edges were nicked and bent. Couldn’t even be used in a vending machine. “Worthless”, I pronounced. Truth is it was still worth ten cents.

We are so quick to pronounce judgment on the things we don’t like that we completely overlook their intrinsic value. We do this to people. We do this to ourselves.

As I stood there looking at that boogered up coin, God spoke to me with that still small voice. Reminding me that I am made in His image and have value to Him, great value. Reminding me that those around me, each and every person, is made in the image of God and has great intrinsic value. Who am I to judge others or myself?

I don’t like the scuffmarks and scars this world has eroded upon me. I can definitely see this erosion in others as well and I pass judgment. I say to myself “Worthless, good for nothing, scum, jerk, @$$hole”.

Verses to meditate on:

  • Joh 7:24 Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment.
  • Luk 18:17 I can guarantee this truth: Whoever doesn't receive the kingdom of God as a little child receives it will never enter it.
  • Heb 12:2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.

Jesus tells us to receive the kingdom like a little child, looking past the dings and dents to see the image of God in others. Jesus endured the cross with joy! Why could He suffer so and still have joy? Because He knew that His sacrifice would bring an innumerable fortune of boogered up coins into His treasury. Truth is we are of great value to Him.