“Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice;
and he fell on his face at Jesus’ feet, giving him thanks. Now he was a Samaritan.”
– Luke 17:15-16
Regardless of the team, it is easy to pick out the stars. They are often taller and more physically developed than the other players. They play with confidence and the game seems to come natural to them. All too often, they are the ones looking up in the stands hoping to win the approval of their over-zealous parents or admiring friends. We live in a world that loves stars and the highlights they create. Successful coaches appreciate the skills of a star player, but they also realize the importance of the other players on the team. Sometimes we call them glue-athletes, who hold the team together through the thick and thin of a season. Often, we do not fully realize their value until they are no longer in the program. There will always be a place for the role player who helps create that perfect team chemistry. We admire their passion for the game and their willingness to do whatever the coach asks. They are truly thankful to be part of the team.
Luke tells a story of ten lepers that should remind us Jesus sees value in everyone. By Jewish law, lepers were told to keep their distance from everyone else. If that wasn’t bad enough, one of the ten in this story was a Samaritan, which made him despised by the Jewish population in every way. In the eyes of the people, these men were impure physically and spiritually. They were outcasts and looked down upon. In the eyes Jesus however, they were much more. When they cried out for mercy, Jesus healed them—even the Samaritan. Luke goes on to tell us that only one of the ten returned to thank Jesus for his compassion. That one man was the Samaritan—the least of all in the eyes of the Jews. How do you see others? Is it with human eyes that judge and compare or is it with the eyes of Jesus, who sees value and worth in every person?
Open my eyes Lord to see as You see. Help me to see value and worth in everyone with whom I have contact today. Amen.