We’d stopped off to pick up a couple of things. Walking inside, our children ran off in different directions. My husband, Paul, followed me around as I gathered what I needed. By the time we made our way to the gift wrap aisle children were buzzing around us once again. Our youngest was quiet. At eight-years-old, Samuel normally was a handful-of-chatter. While deciding on a bag of birthday balloons I asked, “Samuel, you’re awful quiet today son. Is everything okay?”
He looked up at me, “How much does a foster kid cost?”
I wasn’t sure I’d heard him right. “How much does what cost?”
“How much does a foster kid cost?” He repeated. “My new friend in class is a foster kid. He doesn’t have a family. Do we have enough money to buy him?”
Words caught in my throat. Thankfully, my husband Paul was quick to respond. “Well, I’m not sure if we do son. But, have you even thought this through Samuel? If you had someone living with us your age you would have to share your room.”
“I don’t care about that Dad. I feel bad he doesn’t have a family and he wants one.”
Finding my voice, I asked, “So, how much do you think your friend costs?”
“He doesn’t know Mom. He said he thinks he’s free, but he’s going to ask his foster family tonight. He’s going to meet me tomorrow at lunch to tell me how much he’s worth.”
Samuel’s words stopped me cold. He’s going to meet me tomorrow at lunch and tell me how much he’s worth.
That was all it took. On came the water-works, crying right there in the middle of the gift wrap aisle. My husband distracted our son while I stepped away to search for a tissue in my purse. I couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that my son’s new friend was trying to figure out what he was worth.
As a foster child, his loss highlighted the value of family. His greatest desire was to belong to someone who would love him. So much so, for the sake of being loved, he was more than willing to hand his life over to the lowest bidder.
I understand there are many factors that come into play to make someone question their own value. But it didn’t stop the questions from pressing heavy upon me. Why doesn’t this child know what he’s worth? God, this child is no different than so many adults I know. How can people not understand their value? Should I be the one to tell him he is fearfully and wonderfully made? Lord, who will tell him You have a plan for his life?
With the economic climate today, it’s no surprise people struggle with their own self-worth. The loss of a job, the loss of a marriage or a home are all things we think define our value in this world. Peripheral status quo we are tricked to believe makes a difference to our carbon footprint on this earth.
Do you realize how precious you are to the Lord? He says you are the apple of His eye (Zechariah 2:8), that your worth is far above rubies (Proverb 31:10), that He even knows the number of hairs on your head (Luke 12:7).
Your value in God’s eyes makes the Hope Diamond look like a gum ball trinket.
So, what are you really worth? It’s the creator or owner of a thing that determines its value, marking the price and deciding its worth. Our value is in the hands of our creator. We were created by Him and for Him. (Colossians 1:16) Paul reminds us in 1Corinthians 6:20 and again in 1Corinthians 7:23, “You were bought with a price.”
The redeeming love of Christ paid our eternal ransom. Heavenly currency personally handed over by the blood-stained hands of Jesus to His Father, for your very soul.
Charles Spurgeon once said, “Redeeming love is the theme of Heaven. When you reach the upper realms, your most important memory will not be that you were wealthy or poor in this life, nor the fact that you sickened and died, but that you were “bought with a price.””
Yet, daily, people are being spiritually rocked to sleep, believing the lies of the world. You aren’t special. Your life really isn’t all that important. Nobody loves you. Either unaware or not understanding that God marked our price on Calvary. And because of that blessed day God sees us through holy spectacles of His only son’s worth. What kind of love is this? A love beyond measure.
If we struggle to understand our worth it’s because we don’t understand Christ’s worth.
When I recall the look on my son’s face, when he asked how much his friend cost I ache. What pain the Lord must feel when we treat our lives as worthless or of little value.
I made a phone call to this young boy’s foster parents when we got back from the store. I introduced myself and set up a time to let our boys play together. Days later, amidst slides and swings, I shared with my new friend her foster son’s struggle to understand his worth. Her eyes welled up with tears.
“He’s such a sweet boy. And, he’s really taken to our family. We haven’t told him yet, but we’re moving forward with his adoption.”
Adoption—the quintessential definition of value. Hand-picked by someone to love you forever.
Are you one of those people who need a remedial lesson to understand your value or worth? Or is God’s Word enough? The next time you attempt to put a price tag on your life–for what it’s worth, you’re worth more.