Scripture to Read:
- Isaiah 58: 6-12
- Psalm 8: 4-8
- Genesis 1: 26-28
A baseball card was worth $100 twenty years ago, but today is worth a meager $0.50. While time may have changed the card’s perceived value, the baseball card remained a card, did it not? Now, say I damaged the card a little. The disfigured card’s value would probably plummet to $0.00 in the eyes of many; yet, is it not the same card as before? Well, since the card is now valueless, let us tear the card apart entirely; corner to corner, shred what is left of the damaged card! The baseball card is now trash to our eyes, but the card’s substance is within plain sight. In the end, it is still a baseball card, just critically damaged beyond our comprehension.
This scenario exposes the folly of human perception. You see, based upon the perceived value of that baseball card, we would react differently to it; yet it was the same thing all along! And sadly, this folly permeates many aspects of our lives: perceived value, not substance, reigns. Don’t believe me? Reread the scenario above, but replace the baseball card with a human.
Maybe it is this corrupt perception that leads God to tell us to love others like ourselves. Perhaps this is the reason we should think twice before we cast our judgments. In the book of Genesis, the author makes the value of humans clear: God created man and woman in His image. He created us to be the crown of creation. The apex of His divine work! And even when we failed, when we became damaged, His perceived value for us never changed. We know this to be true. Why else would we be starting the season of Lent?
God’s Glory, His Image, is hidden in plain sight all around us. All it takes to see this is trust in a God who sees you and the outcasts of society the same: valuable and loved. Seek first the Kingdom of God. Trust that everything else will follow suit.
Our pride leads us to contemptuous follies, an unseen snare in our line of work. Help us to STOP, THINK, and APPRECIATE Your works of art all around us. After all, this is Your story. Who are we to commentate on such a fantastic, love-inspired narrative? Amen.