The same is true about the way people judge and perceive a person. If someone doesn’t possess a nice new shiny vehicle, then they must not be successful. If they don’t own a house on the right side of the tracks, then perhaps they don’t lend too much credence to our society’s viewpoint.
The same type of stereotype and judgment happened in 1 Samuel 16. In this passage, we see Jesse, the father of King David, parade seven of his sons in front of Samuel, the prophet of God, so that the next king of Israel could be anointed (selected). The one son who Jesse did not initially think about presenting was the young lad, David. Perhaps, this is because David did not fit the mold. The cover of the book just wasn’t good enough.
David didn’t have the credentials that his brothers possessed. His gifting and strengths weren’t those that man was able to easily detect. However, God’s ways are not our ways, and his thoughts are not our thoughts. Once David was presented to Samuel, God immediately instructed Samuel to select him as the future king.
I want to encourage all those in Patterson that no matter what people think or have thought of you, or whether they have negatively spoken over your life, you have been called with the greatness of God inside of you. God is not moved by how people look at you. He is moved by your heart — just as he saw David’s heart, and was not moved by what people thought of David. God will see what’s inside of the book, not just what’s on the cover.
I further encourage you to live for God, not man. God is the one who will promote, bless and anoint you in due time. Regardless of what people have said or will continue to say about you, God has his own thoughts about you in regards to your value, and ultimately that’s all that really matters.
The Rev. Gilbert Ybarra is pastor of The River of Life Christian Fellowship. Sermon notes is a column by local religious leaders.