By Andy Sims
I’ve been to my fair share of flea markets, antique malls, and auctions. While they typically sport a grandiose billing (“Come see the Antique Extravaganza!”), they’re all very similar—old stuff the owners hope they can sell to make a buck.
It’s still fun to rummage through the dusty stacks of clutter, finding items similar to ones you already possess or trying to figure out what possible use an item could have had. Occasionally you find a real treasure, which keeps you coming back.
I’ve never been able to figure out how people set values on the items they sell. “It’s worth whatever you’ll pay for it,” they say. But the line between a bargain and a piece of junk isn’t always clear.
I wonder if Isaac or Ishmael felt a similar confusion. Most of us do. It’s hard to place a true value on ourselves because all we’ve got to go on are ever-changing circumstances. How do you compare the blessings from one life to another? Should we expect life to be equal or fair?
It’s hard to tell how Ishmael or Isaac felt about the hand they were dealt. I know how I’d feel. Both received God’s blessing, yet it hardly seems fair.
You Are His Treasure
Resentment comes from our misguided attempts to place value on our own lives. We tend to compare, question, or forget. Hidden insecurities lead us to assume our value is determined by the latest situation or our greatest failure. If God really loved me, how could this happen?
The truth is, our value has already been established. While our journeys may be quite different, the cross declares what God was willing pay for each of us. And that was an “as is” price, despite our obvious need for repair. Some might question that appraisal, but God never waivers.
The direction he takes with my life may not look anything like what he is doing in yours. I just know he wants to restore us to become like him. That process can be long and even painful. But that’s OK. We’re worth it.
Andy Sims is the director of leadership development for Lifeline Christian Mission (www.lifeline.org). He and his wife, Mindy, live in Cincinnati, Ohio. They have three grown daughters and one granddaughter.