After four years without a television and six more living on hand-me-down sets, my wife and I finally decided to buy a new TV. Because of the cost, we carefully compared models, brands, features, and prices before finally making a purchase. Interestingly, I walked away with not only a TV but an important insight into determining self-worth.
Our experience teaches us that our worth is measured by comparison—against our siblings, classmates, peers, and co-workers. Yet, while determining value by comparison makes sense when buying a TV, in life we are the TVs.
Comparing ourselves to others in order to determine our worth makes as much sense as one TV looking at the others in the store and wishing it were 40 inches (102 cm) instead of 27 (69 cm). It doesn’t make sense, for “which of you by taking thought can add one cubit to his stature” (Matthew 6:27) or one inch to your screen size? The Apostle Paul warned that people “measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise” (2 Corinthians 10:12).
We should also pay little attention to those who do the comparing for us and tell us what they think we’re worth. Even though the retailer has control over a TV’s price, he or she doesn’t determine its value.
Here is the key: it is the customer who looks at the price, evaluates the product, and decides if it is worth the cost. And in this life there is only one Buyer of consequence.
Our Savior, Jesus Christ, evaluated “the product”—us, both collectively and individually. He knew of the depth of iniquity that would be connected with the human family.1 He understood the awful, inestimable price He would be required to pay, “which suffering caused [Him] even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit” (D&C 19:18).
And knowing all, He still decided I was worth it.
No matter how short I think I fall in comparison to others, no matter how little value others see in me, Jesus felt I was worth the price He had to pay.
Attacking our self-worth is one of Satan’s most subtle yet sinister tactics. It is essential for me to believe that the Son of God died not only for the sins of the world but that He died for my sins. If the adversary can lead me to believe otherwise, my doubt may keep me from seeking the Savior’s atoning grace and returning to His presence.
If you doubt your value, go to the Buyer to get the only product review that matters. “We can pray with confidence that we can feel the Savior’s love for us,” said President Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor in the First Presidency. “… He loved us … enough to pay the price of all our sins.”2
Having faith in that love allows the Redeemer to change our lives and carry His purchase home.