They came to the other side of the sea, to the country of the Gerasenes. And when Jesus had stepped out of the boat, immediately there met Him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit. He lived among the tombs. And no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain .... Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always crying out and cutting himself with stones. And when he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and fell down before Him. (Mark 5:1-3, 5-6)
You remember how this story goes—Jesus sets the man free from the demons inside him; the demons go possess a herd of pigs instead; and the pigs decide they don't like their new roommates and very sensibly drown themselves in the sea. The whole neighborhood turns out to see what has happened, and they're utterly terrified—and beg Jesus to go away. And right away, Jesus has to get back in the same boat He's already spent a night in, and go somewhere else.
Was it worth it? To Jesus, yes. He saved one life—one human being—from the power of evil. Compared to that, what did it matter about the wasted trip—the upset villagers—even two thousand dead pigs? (Poor piggies!) That one man made the whole disaster worthwhile.
And that's the way Jesus feels about you, too. You are worth it—worth Him being born in a stable, worth years as a homeless preacher, worth betrayal and beating and nailing to a cross, worth Jesus' own death. He intended to rescue you from the power of evil—and He did it, too. He bought you back for God at the price of His own life. And now He offers you everlasting life. You are worth it to Him.
THE PRAYER: Lord, thank You that I matter that much to You. Amen.
* How do you usually think of yourself—valuable, or not?
* If God sees you as valuable, does that mean you really are valuable?
* What about the people around you—what is their value?
Lenten Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo.
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