On Value

What do we value in people?

Physical appearance?  Wealth?  Intelligence?

What they can do for us?

In Luke 15, a group of tax collectors and sinners gather around Jesus.

They are men and women not esteemed, not valued in their society.

But Jesus is different.

Different from the Pharisees, the teachers of the law.

Different from the ones looking down their noses, calculating value.

He tells them a story.

A woman has ten coins, and loses one.

She still has nine.  Surely nine is plenty.

How much value does that one measly coin have anyway?

And yet.

The lamp is lit.  The house is swept.  The search is made.

And when that coin—the one that others might have ignored and forgotten—          is found,

The neighbors are called.  The rejoicing is loud.

Are we the Pharisees, the teachers of the law?

Are we the ones looking down our noses, calculating value?

Do we allow a few measly coins to stay ignored and forgotten?

Or are we lighting lamps and sweeping edges, searching high and low for ones who are valuable simply because they bear the image of God?

Simply because they are human.

Simply because they are.

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