When I was in high school good grades were a big issue for many of my classmates. Even though it sometimes was hard for me to admit, it was for me too. I felt like I was a failure when I didn’t get the grades I wanted to. It was so bad that I even cheated on a test to get a better grade once. When I think back to that time now, there is no doubt that I found my value in my grades. It was the numbers on a piece of paper that gave me my value.
When I later moved to a new city, I made sure I was active in a lot of different things. I wanted to be recognized by people. I started to get influence and started to achieve things. It was very fun and I got a lot of good experience. Many of the activities were connected to my Christian network and it was one way for me to serve the church. Some people knew me for only some of my achievements. When I realised that I had to stop and look at myself in the mirror and ask: “Am I letting my achievements identify who I am, is it my accomplishments that give me my value?”
I often end up talking with the people that I haven’t met earlier – conversation often goes toward religious issues. My goal is never to talk them into being Christian. But I will always try to tell them that God values them so very much. I’ve noticed that many find their value in what others say about them, but humans’ opinions don’t even come close to the opinion that God has of you.
The Bible tells us that people also had opinions on Jesus and who he was. In Matthew chapter 16 verse 13 Jesus specifically asks his disciples who people say he is. The disciples tell him that some thinks he is a great prophet etc. Then he goes on and asks them who they think he is? The disciple Peter then speaks up and answers: “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
Other people have opinions on us, some of them might be right and some of them might be wrong. The question is, do we find our value in their opinions? Jesus finds his identity in being “the Son of the living God”. That was where he found his value, in the relationship he had with his Father. Jesus wants to invite you into this relationship. He wants you to find your value in who he says you are. To know yourself is to know more and more of who God says you are.
Daniel Munk Piittala-Jensen
Intern at Communications and Media of OPKO.
Juttu on julkaistu Arkin numerossa 4/2021. Tilaa Arkki ilmaiseksi