Forest E. Witcraft, teacher and scholar, once wrote: “A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, or what kind of car I drove…. but the world may be different because I was important in the life of a child.”
He was astutely aware that often people measure their worth by the wrong standards. We seek importance in the value of other’s opinions of us. Most of us are taught very young to be successful we need to hit a home run, make a touchdown, bring home straight A’s or make first chair in the band. We are taught to be of value we must compete with others and win. This lie undermines our self-worth.
Other social values are equally damaging. Think of the teenage girl standing in front of a full length mirror. What is she thinking? She is probably comparing herself to the Queen of the Prom, or her favorite female movie star or singer. Perhaps she thinks no one could love her because she carries too much weight in her hips; her hair is too frizzy or too straight; her complexion is flawed; or her eyes are not blue. The list of imperfections can be infinite. The same can be said of boys. They worry they are too short, too fat, too tall, too skinny. Perhaps they struggle with studies and have no athletic ability. Perhaps there is no father at home or the one they have is an alcoholic or simply neglectful of his duties as a father. In many cases, too many, children are abused at home. Who will teach them how to measure their own worth?
If a child doesn’t have a good spiritual foundation they most surely will feel lost, a misfit, or not good enough. On the other hand, if someone shares with them that they are a child of the Lord and He doesn’t make any junk, they can perceive themselves in a different light. The demands of this world can be crushing. Giving a child the gift of knowing throughout their life there is One who will never fail them, is the greatest gift of all. Telling them the Lord loved them so much He gave his only begotten Son for them(John 3:16) is the Truth which can carry them through all things. Knowing “with God all things are possible” can elevate not only their self-worth but their future.