Lesson 2: What are You Worth?
Tim is an unhappy fifth-grader. He never gets smiling faces on his test papers at school. His classmates tell him that he is stupid, and he doesn’t argue with them.
He thinks they are right. He has quit trying to do better. He is convinced that he is a failure and that he will always be a failure in everything he does.
The problem that Tim has is the same problem that many boys and girls have. Almost everyone, at one time or another, has this problem.
What is this problem which causes so much hurt and pain? It is the awful feeling that you are ugly and unattractive and that nobody likes you. It is the feeling that you are dumb and that other people are smarter than you. It is the feeling that you are not as good as other people. It is the feeling that you are worthless.
Why do we have these wrong feelings?
Why do we feel that we are not as good as other people, that we are dumb, that we are ugly and unattractive, and that others do not like us? These feelings come from accepting wrong thoughts.
Do you remember what we learned in the last lesson? It is this: Thinking wrong thoughts leads to wrong actions and wrong actions lead to wrong or unpleasant feelings.
Tim isn’t actually dumb, but because he accepts the wrong thought that he is stupid and cannot do anything right, he does not study as he should. In fact, he doesn’t even try. This causes him to make poor grades and then he feels bad about himself.
Tim feels bad about himself because he is accepting the wrong thought that he is stupid. Wrong thoughts lead to wrong actions and wrong feelings.
What does the world value most?
In our last lesson, we saw that Satan uses his world-system to put wrong thoughts into people’s minds. Satan wants us to think just like the world.
The world says that the most important things in life are: (1) having good looks, (2) being smart, and (3) having a lot of money. Let us think about these things.
Having good looks
The world says, “If you are good looking, you are worth a lot, but if you are not, you are not worth much and you probably won’t be happy.”
This is one of Satan’s lies, but most people believe it. Many boys and girls dislike themselves and some even hate themselves because they do not like the way they look. They think, “If only I could look like so-and-so, I would be happy.”
Most people think that being beautiful or handsome automatically makes a person happy, but this is not true. Some of the most unhappy people in the world are those who are the most beautiful and the most handsome.
God wants us to see that our worth as a person does not depend on our outward looks. Our body is just the “house” we live in. God says that what we are is far more important than the “house” we live in. The Bible says, “Man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7)
The world says, “If you are smart, you are worth something; if you are not, then you are not worth much.” This is another of Satan’s lies.
The truth is that your value or worth is not determined by how smart you are. Some young people have a hard time in school. They do not learn as easily as others. When they give a wrong answer in class, everyone laughs. This makes them feel dumb and inferior.
The more a person fails at something, the more discouraged he becomes. Gradually he comes to think that he is a complete failure. He may decide that he cannot do anything right and quit trying.
God never values a person by how smart he is. When the Lord Jesus chose His disciples, He chose plain, ordinary people.
Another way the world values people is by how much money they have. The world says, “If your family is rich, you are worth something, but if your family is poor, you are not worth much.” This is another of Satan’s lies. The truth is that money does not make a person happy, nor does money determine how much a person is worth.
When the Lord Jesus was in the world, He was very poor. He never had a home of His own. So far as we know, He never had any money of His own. Did this mean that He was not worth much? Of course not! He was the Son of God.
Change Your Thinking!
To change the way you feel about yourself, you must change your thinking. You must think right thoughts instead of wrong thoughts. Right thoughts lead to right actions and right feelings.
What are YOU worth?
What something is worth is determined by what someone is willing to pay for it. We may say that a certain horse is worth $500 because that is what someone is willing to pay for it.
We say that a certain automobile is worth $10,000 because that is what people are willing to pay or give for it.
What something is worth is determined by what people are willing to pay for it.
What are you and I worth? We are worth what God was willing to give to us. What did God give for us? He gave His Son for us. He did not give silver and gold for us; He gave His Son. This shows what we are worth to God.
“For God so loved [put your name here] that He gave His only Begotten Son.” John 3:16
We are worth what God was willing to give to us. He gave His Son for us.
Satan likes to put wrong thoughts into our minds. He may try to get you to think that you are not worth anything. But what are you worth? You are worth what God was willing to give to you. He gave His Son for you! He gave Jesus to die on the cross so that you could belong to Him.
If you are a child of God, you truly belong to God because He bought you. What was the price He paid for you? The price was His own Son. The Bible says, “you are not your own, for you are bought with a price.” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
Here are some suggestions that will help you overcome the feeling that you are worthless:
* Recognize that other people have the same feelings that you have.
When you see your classmates smiling and laughing, you may think that they never have feelings of worthlessness like you have, but this is not so. Everyone has these same feelings at one time or another.
* Make friends.
You do not have to be beautiful or smart or have a lot of money to make friends. The best way to have a good friend is to be a good friend.
Never make fun of another person. Respect others and accept them as they are. Let them know that they are important to you.
Show special attention to those who have difficulty making friends. They will love and appreciate you for this. Nothing helps your self-confidence like having good friends that love and appreciate you. This helps you to accept yourself.
* Learn to do something well.
One of the best ways to overcome feelings of worthlessness is to learn to do something well. Find something that you like to do and work at it!
Say to yourself, “I will learn how to play a musical instrument and I’ll do whatever is necessary to be good at it.”
Do you like a certain subject in school? Then try to be the best in your class on this subject. Of course, you must try to do well in the other subjects also.
Perhaps you like sports. Pick out the sport you enjoy most and try to be your very best in that sport. You can learn skills in sports, so practice, practice, practice!
Don’t go around feeling sorry for yourself. Make the most of what you have. Develop a skill that will make you feel good about yourself.
* Face your problems honestly.
Get alone where you can be quiet and think. Begin thinking about all the things that you don’t like about yourself.
Do you dress in a sloppy way? You can do something about this. Make sure that you take time to be clean and to look your best each day.
Are you overweight? You can do something about this. Cut out cookies and candy. Eat less bread and eat more vegetables and fruits. Get some exercise each day. Soon you will be looking better and feeling better about yourself.
Do you make poor grades because you do not study properly? You can do something about this also. Begin taking time to study as you should. Surprise your teacher and yourself!
You can do something about many of the problems you have, but there will be some problems which you cannot solve. Everyone has problems like this. The best thing to do with the problems which you cannot solve is to give them to the Lord Jesus. Tell Him all about them. You can pray a prayer like this:
Dear Lord Jesus, You know all about me. You know about these problems which I cannot solve. I cannot handle them, so I am turning them over to You. I’m giving myself to You and I’m giving these problems to You. From now on I am not going to worry about them because I’ve given them to You.
The best thing to do with problems which you cannot solve is to give them to the Lord Jesus.
When you start to think about these problems again, remind yourself that you have turned them over to the Lord Jesus. Tell Him that you are trusting Him to handle them.
Remember that God loves and accepts you as you are and not because of your looks, your intelligence, or your money. God says to you, “Regardless of what the world may think about you, regardless of what your classmates may think about you, I LOVE YOU and I accept you.” It is wonderful to know that you are loved and accepted by God Himself.