In 2000 and 2001, we did several outreach initiatives in Ibiza. One of our team members was a guy called David B. In the 70’s and 80’s he was involved with crime in the Manchester area. Dave is an old school type ex-villain, a larger than life character! When he left Manchester, David moved to Carlisle. He felt his life no longer had value. The only value he had ever known was the respect that he had received as a criminal.
One day there was a knock on his flat door. A young man stood there: ‘Hi, my name’s Mike, I’m a Christian; I was wondering if I could talk to you about faith?’ David slammed the door in his face. He didn’t want to know.
The next day, David was out in the town when he saw Mike again, this time standing on the street corner, talking to people. David headed off fast to avoid him.
Two days later there was another knock on the door. David opened it, and, guess who it was? Yes, it was Mike! David told him where to go, in words that you will need to imagine, and slammed the door in his face.
The next day, David was out in town again, and who should he see? Yes, Mike. So again he headed off in a different direction, keeping his head well down.
The following day, there was a knock on his door. He opened it, and it was Mike again. Can you imagine what he was thinking? David slammed the door. ‘This guy is doing my head in, I can’t get away from him, I know what I’m going to do, I’m going to set him up’, he thought. So Dave decided to put dozens and dozens of explicit pictures of naked ladies on his living room walls.
The next day there was a knock on the door, and yes, you’ve guessed it, it was Mike. But this time David said, ‘Hi mate, I knew you’d come back, do you want to come in for a brew?’ ‘Yes, that would be great, I don’t mind if I do.’
Dave led Mike into his living room, and said; ‘Sit down!’ David sat opposite him and watched Mike’s facial expressions as he looked at the naked ladies on the wall. Mike was just looking quietly, so David asked, ‘What do you think of them, hey?’ He had a smirk on his face, as he nodded towards the images all around him. ‘Do you like ’em, they’re beauties, aren’t they?’
Mike looked back from the pictures, and replied slowly, ‘Yes, they are, very nice, they are absolutely beautiful.’ With a triumphant laugh, Dave responded, ‘There you are, I knew it, you’re no different that me, we’re all the same!’ ‘Well, that depends’, said Mike, ‘When you look at the naked ladies, you are seeing them through the eyes of lust, but when I look at them I’m seeing them how God sees them. When I look at those naked ladies I see their true value, just like God does. God doesn’t view us by our outward appearance, he sees our hearts.’
Mike’s response left David silent as its implications started to sink in. He was thinking, ‘If God values the naked girls, sees what is in their hearts, does that means that He might value me, even though I’m a criminal?’
That day David asked God into his life. He realised that, despite the life he had lived, he was still a person of value to God! You should have heard him telling everyone in Ibiza! We couldn’t shut him up!!
Do you feel valued? Have things happened in your life that have caused you to lose your sense of personal value? Maybe, due to circumstances beyond your control, you’ve had to do things that have taken away your self-respect? Maybe you have even resorted to using your body to make money to survive?
Remember this: God sees the inside you, and values you more than you could ever imagine. No matter what you’ve done, or where you’ve been, you need to know that God values YOU! And with God on your case, you can once again know you are a person of value!