“Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?” Nathanael asked. “Come and see,” said Philip. John 1:46
To me, this is one of the most shocking scriptures in all the Bible. The ‘anything good’ that they spoke about was Jesus himself. I realize Nathanael had no clue who He was, but from my perspective, I’m all like – hello, Jesus is the Messiah, Savior of the world. It shocks me that even He suffered ridicule because of where He came from. Sound familiar? That’s the world we live in, where putting people’s worth on them based on where or who they came from is the reality. I’ve been there, people looking at me and saying to themselves, or worse, saying to others about me, can anything good from Ellsinore, or Debi or David (my parents)? And sadly, I too am guilty of having said similar words about others.
We have to get to the point that we don’t value one person any more than we do another. God looks at each of us with the same set of love. To Him it doesn’t matter where we came from, who our parents or grandparents are, what we’ve done or who we’ve been – our worth is the same. Our value is equal, and when God created us, He said we are good (Genesis 1:31). So who are we to determine someone’s worth?
How can we make the change? How can we start valuing every life equally? Let’s start with Phillip’s response to Nathanael, “Come and see.” Jesus had asked Phillip to follow Him, and Phillip extended that invite to Nathanael. Such a simple and profound thought is to get to know others and the God who made them. When we grow closer to Jesus, our love for others will also increase; we will begin to see the worth of others through the lens of Christ. No more placing limitations on others because in Christ there is no limit on their worth or the good they can accomplish through Jesus.
Now some of you may be thinking, I struggle more with believing I am the good. It’s easier to believe God can use our neighbor and that they have more value than we do because of where or who they’ve come from, or their nearly perfect lives. But let Ephesians 2:10 remind you of this truth, For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. You’ll notice it doesn’t say that we should walk in them IF we come from the right region, country, state, family, or if we’ve never made mistakes. Nope, you are His child, and you are good, and created for good works. Before you were born, He knew you and was already preparing your path. So stop believing the lies of the enemy or the lies that people are filling your mind full of that nothing good will ever come from you, your family, or your region. YOU are the good, embrace it, and all God has for you.