Sometimes, many times, we humans place such little value in each other.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how I relate to people whom I don’t completely agree with, or even with people with whom I am in complete disagreement. And I’ve realized that a lot of it boils down to how I perceive, or value, these people.
Because here’s the thing. This summer, I’ve come across a handful of people, people who I love dearly, who I think are absolutely wonderful and who have shown me a lot of things. Sometimes, these people have said things which have made me want to jump in, correct them, clarify that on the said topic I am at odds with them and do not agree with their words, proclaim to them that they should listen to me because I’m the one in the room who holds the truth on the matter.
And then this phrase, “fearfully and wonderfully made,” keeps popping into my head, and makes me realize that to say these things would not be right, would not be graceful, would not be loving.
(Nor would they be true, because, personally, I hold no more truth on the matter than anyone else. Truth is truth, held by no one person, though all seek it somehow.)
Because here’s the thing. If I believe that we as humanity are “fearfully and wonderfully made” and that God’s “works are wonderful” (Psalm 139), if I believe that God is a sovereign God who works all things together for His glory and our good, if I believe that we have been gifted with bodies, and minds, and hearts, and souls, and the ability to think and feel and act upon these things, then that means I have to have a little faith in my fellow humanity. I have to embrace that our disagreements don’t detract from the value of others, and that because they are wonderful people created by an amazing God, they have the rights to think and feel and act upon these things the same as I do. And sometimes that’s hard. Sometimes I want to be the overprotective mother trying to stop her little ones from exploring things that she just knows are going to hurt them. The thing is, so often over protective mothers, while well meaning, are worried over nothing. Yes, it may be a narrow escape, but the children so often come out all right in the end – somehow it all works out. The even more humbling thing is to realize that I’m not even the overprotective mother; I’m just another kid fumbling around the place, thinking that I know which paths are the safest, but not really knowing anything at all.
The not knowing is scary. But it brings me back to counting what I do know: knowing that there is a loving God and that this is His beautiful creation; knowing that we are His children and that we are to value each other because we are all his children; knowing that we have a Savior who through His life showed us that we are to show beauty, love, and grace to each other.
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.” (I John 4)
So here’s the thing. I’m working on this. I’m working on being loving, on valuing my fellow humans above myself, no matter where our disagreements lie. I’m working on having some faith in the hearts and minds and souls of my brothers and sisters, because I have faith in the Father by whom we are fearfully and wonderfully made.