In India, there is an ancient story about a gold ring, a gold nugget, and a gold signet, which I believe reveals a beautiful truth about our worth in the eyes of God.
The story goes something like this...
A long time ago there was a collector know for his riches and rare finds. While the collector slept, often the objects argued with one another about who was more valuable.
The gold ring argued it was more valuable than the other two because it was made for the finger of a very important bride.
The gold nugget argued it was more valuable than the other two because miners had risked their lives to find it.
While the gold signet argued it was more valuable than the other two because it had sealed the messages of a prominent leader.
It was said that they argued day and night, until finally the ring said, "I know a way we can settle this. Let's ask God. God will decide and surely be able to tell us who is the best among us."
The other two agreed, and so they approached the Almighty. Each made its claim for being superior. God listened carefully, and when they were done, God simply replied, "I cannot settle your dispute, I am sorry."
The gold signet seal became indignant. "What do you mean, you cannot settle this debate for us? You are God."
"You are right and that is the problem," said God, "I don't see a ring, a nugget and a seal. All I see is gold."
What I love about this simple, yet profound story is the essence of what we as humanity continue to struggle and fight about.
Existence is pure gold.
Our very existence in the eyes of God is the gold; it is what is of highest worth rather than our form.
Our existence as those who have been created by God, regardless of form, race, gender, sexual orientation, creed, affiliations, status, occupation, title, or position, is what makes us wondrous, beautiful, and as precious as gold.
Nothing else is needed.
Nothing else matters.
Yet, I wonder what it will take for everyone to see this, to understand this, and to accept this as the most important truth.
Imagine how different our world would be.
Blessings, Rev. Shana Johnson, ISC Conference Minister