When I was about ten or eleven years old, my two friends and I would play “Charlies Angels.” For those of you who are not familiar, it was a TV drama in the late 70’s, staring Farrah Fawcett, Kate Jackson, and Jaclyn smith. These women were P.I’s and they meant business! I was the only blond so of course I played Farrahs’ character. Oh we had such fun adventures with that game. Our imaginations had us tracking down criminals, cracking cold cases and locking up the bad dudes.
Man, we sure felt important when we played that game. We strutted around with our pretend walkie-talkies (wow, that really shows my age, huh?) We felt like because we were doing important work, then that made ‘us’important. We were “somebody.” We would even try to one up each other from time to time. Because ya know, locking up pretend thugs makes you the who’s who in the neighborhood.
I recently had an experience as an adult that for some reason made me think of the years I played a pretend important person so long ago. I’ve been working on not feeling “less than” or “inferior” to someone else who isn’t blind. This emotion can get the better of me occasionally. Especially when I learn of how much more someone else is doing in ministry. Not out of a competition stand point but from a “Lord I could do so much more if I wasn’t blind” stand point. This can leave me feeling like I’m not as important to God’s work as I seem to think. It makes me feel a bit like I’m playing that pretend important P.I. agent from my youth.
My dishwasher went on the fritz and we had to get a new one. While perusing the appliance aisle at, well… a large hardware chain, we came upon a brand that we were not entirely familiar with. I made a call and learned that this particular brand was, in fact, a good brand to get. The salesman came over to assist us and just as a second opinion sort of thing, we asked him about the brand as well. He replied by saying “Oh yes, if you have this brand”, pointing to the dishwasher we were inquiring about, “you are somebody!” Umm… really? A dishwasher makes me somebody? It really bothered me to hear the salesman tell me that. Now I know this is nothing more then a sales technique. Everybody wants to be somebody. But this is the message that is driven into our heads on a daily basis. You have to have, to be. We are told by advertisements for cars, neighborhoods, clothing, jobs, and now apparently, dishwashers, that what we have, makes who we are.
If we are not in a position to have said items, we can feel so less than. We may drive a used car. We may have moved into an old house (or manufactured home, apartment, etc.). We may purchase clothes from a consignment or thrift shop. Is this supposed to mean we’re not “somebody”?
Oh friends, if I could go to each and every person who feels less than because of this type of message, I would wrap my arms around them and say “You are somebody… you are a child of the King!”. John 3;16 says “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son, that whosoever believes in Him will not parish, but have everlasting life.”
Do you see the four most important words in that passage? WHOSOEVER BELIEVES! Notice what it does NOT say… whosoever drives a brand-new car…whosoever lives in a new built home in the richest neighborhood… whosoever wears the most expensive clothes… whosoever has the top of the line dishwasher! Ugh, you have no idea how much I wanted to sit that man down and tell him that people are not somebody by the dishwasher they have. God created you so that makes you somebody. We (including me) can get so caught up in how others see us. Our kids want to go back to school with the best and most expensive clothes to impress a bunch of kids who don’t give a hoot about their real life. We want to get the nicest car to impress our neighbors who wouldn’t even grab our newspaper for us while we were out of town visiting a sick relative. We want more status at work to impress our co-workers who spread gossip about us on their lunch breaks and never invite us to come along on that lunch break. We need only to know that Jesus values us because He made us. We need not obtain anything to be valued by God. He values the homeless man on the street corner every bit as much as the CEO of the largest corporation.
My mission is to help others see that status, money, clothes, size, color, notoriety, nor any other worldly measuring stick means anything to God. He values you because you are His creation. His master piece. Jesus loves me, this I know. For the bible tells me so. It tells you so too.