Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Shepastor: “Their Perceptions Don’t Determine Your Value…”

Zechariah 11:12-13 New International Version (NIV)
12 I told them, “If you think it best, give me my pay; but if not, keep it.” So they paid me thirty pieces of silver.
13 And the Lord said to me, “Throw it to the potter”—the handsome price at which they valued me! So, I took the thirty pieces of silver and threw them to the potter at the house of the Lord.

“Their Perceptions Don’t Determine Your Value”

30 pieces of silver was the amount of money that a slave owner would receive for a slave that had been gored by an ox. The text says that the people for whom the Lord had done so much treated Him and His representative, His prophet, Zechariah like a severely wounded slave who was viewed as being of little or no worth. These verses foreshadow the acts of the Pharisees as they payed Judas 30 pieces of silver for betraying our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ as if, Jesus was worthless.

The term “value” means, “…the regard that something is held to deserve; the importance, worth, or usefulness of something.” We ascribe “value” or worth to objects as well as to concepts, relationships and ideas. For example, we might value or hold in high regard a vase or a painting. We might value or hold in high regard a friendship or someone’s opinion. When we value something, we make a decision about how much importance it has, how useful it is, how much we think about this or that. But this psychological exercise gets off track when it is used to judge or determine the importance of a human being, or more importantly the importance of our relationship with God.

Think about it. The pharisees placed little value upon Jesus. They paid Judas the price one would pay for a slave that had been run through with the horns of an ox! Judas was paid 30 pieces of silver for betraying our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! In our text, Zechariah says,

13 And the Lord said to me, “Throw it to the potter”—the handsome price at which they valued me!

Potter’s were viewed as nothing…poor, dirty, vagabonds traveling around the town selling their pots. The Lord says they placed Him in the category of a gored slave and a “potter’s field.” THE LORD!!! Now think about that in terms of our lives. Did the perceptions of the foolish people who rejected Zechariah as their shepherd make Zechariah any less valuable as a prophet called and anointed in the sight of the God? Did the perceptions of the foolish, wicked people diminish the awesome power and greatness of the LORD? Did the foolish and wicked perceptions of the pharisees about Jesus make Him any less than the who He is, the Son of God? NO!!!

There will always be those who don’t understand who you are. There will always be those who want to place you in certain boxes, and corners and lists and categories, placing “less than,” values upon you. But their perceptions don’t determine your worth! Their thoughts about you don’t determine your value. Their little ideas about you don’t change who you are. Don’t allow what they think about you to shape the way you think about yourself. Like the Proverbs 31 woman, you must “perceive that YOUR merchandise is good!!!” (Proverbs 31:18).

Yes, it hurts when people you hope would see your value treat you like a gored slave. Yes it hurts when society, shaped by institutional and systemic racism imposes upon your life values that are less than what they think of their pets, literally. Yes, it hurts when we see systems that view our lives as expendable, our gifts as commodities to be used for their pleasure and their entertainment. Yes, it hurts when doors are slammed shut, when promises are broken, when you experience rejection, when individuals and groups and entities treat you as if you are nothing. IT HURTS!!!

But you must raise your thoughts above their ignorance. You must remind yourself that their perceptions don’t determine your value. You must remind yourself that God made you and God don’t make no junk! You must remind yourself that God has created you, that God has gifted you, that God has formed you and that God has given you GREAT VALUE. Your merchandise IS GOOD!

Don’t linger in the darkness of their ignorance. Don’t linger in the foolishness of their underestimation about you. But rather, stand in the reality of your value, given to you not by man, but by God himself. Know yourself. It does not matter how many mistakes that you have made, how many flaws that you may have, how many dreams you have yet to fulfill. Those are simply aspects of your life, they are not the totality of your life. Get your understanding of your value from GOD and not from the flawed, ignorance of others!!!

God valued us so much that He sent His only begotten Son, Jesus to die for our sins. God gives us our value. Get to know your value rooted in Christ Jesus. Stand up in your spirit. Run to the cross. Look up and live! Embrace your beauty, your giftedness, your uniqueness, your value, your worth. Walk in who the Lord made you to be and not in the shadow of the opinion of fools.

In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris

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