Phillip Yancey in his book Reaching for the Invisible God recounts this story.
Rosemary had a rag doll. It was her favorite doll and Rosemary went nowhere without it. The doll went from new and clean to dirty and threadbare -- but it was the most precious of all of Rosemary’s possessions. Like Linus and his blanket, Rosemary could not bear to face life without her rag doll.
When Rosemary’s family moved from Scotland to America, each family member carefully
|Like Linus and his blanket, |
Rosemary could not bear to face life
without her rag doll.
selected what possessions to bring along. Rosemary chose just one thing: her rag doll. It did not get packed; it was to stay with her on the trip. But things took a turn for the worse. Somehow, in the airport, Rosemary misplaced her rag doll.
The family began a search, retracing their steps. “Rosemary, do you remember where you may have laid her down?”, was asked time and time again. Skycaps, ticket agents and restroom attendants were all asked if they had seen a rag doll. Rosemary became so distraught at the loss of the doll that the family considered postponing their flight. Time was passing. Nothing else mattered right now because Rosemary’s rag doll was missing.
Finally the doll was located. As soon as it was placed in her arms Rosemary became calm. Onlookers were wondering why an old doll had such value, why parents would run all over an airport and possibly postpone a flight because of a dirty threadbare rag doll. In one sense they would have been right. The doll had no worth in itself; but it had much worth in the girl’s eyes.
You see, some things are loved because they are worthy; some things are worthy because they are loved. Gorgeous super-models, gifted athletes, brilliant scientist, priceless works of art, talented actors -- they are loved because of their inherent worth or ability. But there are many things, like the rag doll, that have great worth, not because of some intrinsic value, but because they are loved.
That’s the way it is with God’s love, and I am thankful for that. God’s love is not based on our worth; and honestly I am not worthy to be loved by God. Before He entered my life I was filled with sin, and even now after walking with Him for over 35 years, I still sin, mess up, fall and fail -- yet I am still loved. Some things are loved because they are worthy and some things are worthy because they are loved – you and I fit into the latter category. St. Augustine said of God, “By loving the unlovable, You made me loveable.”
In a nutshell that is the story of Jesus. God loved people so much that He came to earth and was born of a virgin named Mary. He loved people that were full of sin and fear, who were selfish and unloving, who had little if any value in themselves and because of the great love He had for all of us, He gave us eternal value. He gave us worth.
Some things are loved because they are worthy; some things are worthy because they are loved. God loves you; you are worthy.