Friday, January 6, 2017

Connections: Valuing Ourselves

Chuckle: “Happiness is hiring a baby sitter who is on a diet!”
Quote: “Your worth is beyond measure.” --Holley Gerth

“But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are a kingdom of priests, God’s holy nation, his very own possession. This is so you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light” (1 Peter 2:9 NLT).
Today, we continue thinking about our need for connections with God and other people. To fully enjoy healthy relationships, you must see yourself as a person of great value to God, and a recipient of His great love, mercy, and grace. I think it was Max Lucado who said, “If God carried a wallet, your picture would be in it.” But you must remember that your worth/value comes from being one of God’s children, not from what you can achieve.
If we desire healthy relationships, we must value ourselves as God values us. He loves you with an unconditional kind of love. Jeremiah 31:3 says, "I will love you with an everlasting love." Daniel 10:19 tells us, “Don't be afraid for you are deeply loved by God." There is nothing you can do that will cause God to love you more or love you less. We can't earn his love and acceptance. God chose to love us unconditionally. How can I be sure God really loves me -- really values me? Here are two ways.
Because he created you. Psalm 8:4-6 says, "What are we mortals that you should think of us?. . . You made us a little lower than heavenly beings and crowned us with glory and honor." God made us in His image, but sin has marred that image. Satan will tell you that you have no value -- no one could ever love you. The world says you must be beautiful or handsome and wealthy to have value. You may wish you were like someone else so you would feel valued and loved. But God made you, loves you, and values you.
Tony Campolo tells of a friend who had a three year-old daughter. One night, terrible thunder and lightning storms. Father awoke in the storm and checked on his daughter. He found her standing on the window sill spread-eagled against the glass looking toward the sky and smiling. He said, "Honey, what in the world are you doing?" She said, "Daddy, I think God's taking pictures of me!" Why don't we feel that way? She felt important and believed she was important to God. When we recognize that we have value, we can build lasting relationships.
Because Jesus Christ died for you. I John 4:10, "It is not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins." You are so valuable God gave the best he had -- the one he loved the most. Our worth is not self-created. We can't make ourselves of value. God has already done that. In Christ, through Christ, and by Christ we have value. Because he loved you and died for you, You can receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. If you know Christ, His Spirit lives in you and gives you a new identity in Him. Ephesians 5:8 says, "For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light." We weren't in the darkness -- we were the darkness. But now we are light in the Lord. Do you know who you are -- or whose you are? Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and you have worth beyond measure.
Love, Jerry & Dotse


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