Trying to Measure Up :: By Grant Phillips

The egotist, narcissist, and others of like kind may choose to skip this article since they have no shortage of self-esteem anyway. However, millions of others may need some assurance that they are important just the way they are, absent the sin issue of course.

“What are people, that you should make so much of us, that you should think of us so often?” (Job 7:17 NLT)

“what are mere mortals that you should think about them, human beings that you should care for them?” (Psalms 8:4 NLT)

“O LORD, what are human beings that you should notice them, mere mortals that you should think about them?” (Psalms 144:3 NLT)

“For in one place the Scriptures say, “What are mere mortals that you should think about them, or a son of man that you should care for him?” (Hebrews 2:6 NLT)God loves mankind. Read the remainder of Hebrews, chapter two and see the extent of His great love for us.

Millions of people though are always trying to measure up to others. It may be through financial means, looks, status, possessions, and many other reasons. When reading the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) there is one thing that quickly jumps off the pages. Jesus loved (still does) people. It made no difference to Him if they were illiterate, educated, religious, non-religious, respected in the community, not respected in the community, sickly, physically detesting, etc.

Jesus has not changed one iota.

“Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.” (Hebrews 13:8)

He loves you and me, and it doesn’t matter who we are, where we live, the color of our skin, how much money we have or don’t have, if we’re ugly or pretty, fat or thin, bald or not, etc. It doesn’t matter. He loves us just the way we are.

He loves us if we live in a palace, in a prison, in an alley, or a nice suburb. He loves us if we are a debutante, a prostitute, a financier, a beggar, a ball player, a prisoner, a soldier, a policeman, a teacher, a janitor, etc. He loves all people, and not just as a group. He loves you and me … INDIVIDUALLY.

“What is the price of five sparrows—two copper coins? Yet God does not forget a single one of them. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.” (Luke 12:6-7 NLT)

For those who feel they need to measure up to others I ask, “Why?” God made you the way you are (excluding the sin issue), and He loves you just the way you are. If you are a child of God, you are a child of the King of kings and Lord of lords. If you are not a child of God, you can be by putting your trust in Jesus Christ.

We all need to make this thing with God very personal. He has made it personal. For example, many years ago someone gave this illustration with John 3:16. They said to insert your own name. I’ll use my name as an example.

“For God so loved GRANT, that he gave his only begotten Son, that IF GRANT believeth in him GRANT should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn GRANT; but that GRANT through him might be saved.” (John 3:16-17) I added verse 17 to continue the thought.

Now insert your name in place of mine. Wouldn’t this be a great method of reading some of the Bible? Of course it would! Try it and see just how personal it gets. Don’t you think God wrote His Word to make it personal? He most certainly did.

Granted, sometimes He is speaking to a nation, but many times He is speaking to many different types of people.

Two other examples:

“For GRANT has sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” (Romans 3:23)

“GRANT, Come unto me, you that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)

There is no need to even think about measuring up to other people, when the God of Heaven has made His love for us so very personal. Regardless of whom you are and your situation in life, God loves you and knows you personally. Even many Christians have forgotten that.

Maybe you’re shy and have no friends, because you don’t think you measure up to other people. Notice the following verses.

“A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” (Proverbs 18:24)

That friend who is closer than a brother is none other than the Lord Jesus Christ.

“And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.” (James 2:23)

Abraham was a friend of God because he believed God, and in believing God, God clothed him with His own righteousness. He will do the same for any of us.

If we are a child of God, we should never be ashamed of our heritage. Let us accept ourselves for who we are, and if there is work to be done (there always is), let God mold us into the person He wants us to be.

The earthly things don’t matter, and that is where we are often trying to measure up to others. Only the spiritual will last for eternity. So, “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” (Colossians 3:2 NIV)

Grant Phillips