Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Dipping the Quill Deeper: A Question of Worth

by Eva Marie Everson

This year I will see my 41st and my 42nd books published. One of those books is based on a continuing class I’ve given at writers conferences for the past several years, a class initially titled “Labyrinth.”

The idea for “Labyrinth” came after I served on faculty at the Blue Lake Christian Writers Conference in Andalusia, Alabama. While there, and just as I was about to leave, I picked up a folded piece of paper that had been on the desk of my lodging room, but one I had not bothered to look at before. The paper held information about the prayer labyrinth located on the conference center’s grounds.

After weeks of studying up on prayer labyrinths and journaling my desire to, first, find one that I could walk and then, second, that I could own, I found myself immersed in a written question and answer session with God—one that continues today.

That session led to the class and the class led to a book with a current working title of The Third Path; Finding Intimacy with God on the Path of Questioning (to be published by Bold Vision Books). Within the pages of this work, I dig into some of the questions God asks within the Bible, questions He asks men and women, not because He doesn’t know the answers, but because He wants the recipient to find them.

I included 26 questions . . . but there are many, many more with God’s Word.

Let’s take a moment to look at another one.

Matthew 10:29
Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?

Jesus is about to send His twelve disciples out to minister in His name among the Jews only. But before doing so, He gave them explicit instructions along with the power to heal the sick, raise the dead, and drive out demons. He also gave one of my favorite directions when He said, “When you enter a home, give it your greeting” (Matthew 10:12). In the book of Luke, at another time of sending His disciples out, His instruction was given this way: “When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house’ (10:5).

Because I stay in a lot of homes while traveling, these are words I keep close to my heart.

But, back to our story.

Jesus’ instructions continued.

He told the disciples that He was sending them out like sheep among wolves, so they were to always stay on guard. When arrested (I find it interesting that He never said if but when), they were not to worry about what to say because “you will be given the words to say by the Spirit of my Father” (Matthew 10:20, paraphrased).

Then it seems that Jesus began to speak prophetically of a time and place and of future circumstances. Brother against brother. Father against child. Children against parents. Death.


Then Jesus began to teach. He spoke of students not being above their teacher, or a servant above his master . . . but, He said, it is enough to be like the teacher or the master.

“But do not be afraid,” Jesus then continued. “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul” (26, 28).

And then comes the question: Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?

Sparrows and Pennies
Sparrows are tiny, compact birds. You’ve probably heard them when you wake up and stretch in your bed as they are already at work, singing their morning songs. They’re pretty much everywhere. Common. They sing in “choirs” and their melodies are a complex blending of chirrups and tschilps and philips.

Did I mention they’re small? And, because there are so many varieties, they are not always so easily recognizable. You might see a sparrow and think it’s a wren. You could possibly see a song sparrow and think it is lark sparrow.

The question Jesus asked the disciples in Matthew about the value of sparrows is much like the question He asked during another event recorded in Luke 12. Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies?

The coins mentioned here were assarias, which was a Roman coin we’d associate with a penny. In their day, the tiniest bird for the lowest amount of money. But Jesus is not speaking of their worthlessness, but of their worthiness to the Father.

Yet not one of them is forgotten by God . . . you are worth more than many sparrows (Luke 12:6b,7b).

What Is Your Value?
In our world of publishing during what seems to be these prophetic times, these times of the world’s great need for a Savior, it’s easy to look at what others are doing—the bigger birds—and think our miniscule morning songs are not of much value. That bird over there has a book contract with lots of money dedicated to advances and promotions. That bird over there has hit #1 on the New York Times bestseller list. That bird over there is asked to speak at all the best churches, book clubs, and/or writing conferences. That bird over there stands on the stage everywhere and gives keynote address after keynote address, inspiring others with words I’m sure I could sing just as well. That bird over there is easily recognized.

But here I am singing my tiny, simple good-morning song. A lovely tune, to be sure. But look how small I am. How insignificant I am, singing in this choir, my work or myself hardly distinguishable. What value do I have amongst all those big birds?

The Question and the Answer
Jesus not only asked the question (in both Matthew and Luke), He also gave the answer. You, little sparrow, are invaluable to the Father.

Look back a few verses in Matthew at something Jesus said before He asked the question we’ve looked at today. “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:28).

You see, we are not working as writers to satisfy others who may or may not see our worth; we are working as writers to please God, who sees us as invaluable.

In your journal (I hope you have one!), write the question: Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Then rewrite it into this paraphrased version: How valuable am I to God?

Really dig into this question. Reflect on all He has done and continues to do for you. Take your time; when you really start to answer the questions, you’ll discover the answers are as complex as a sparrow’s song.

Eva Marie Everson will teach her continuing class at the Blue Ridge Christian Writers Conference in May/June. She only accepts 12 members for the class. She only has a handful of spots for 2022 remaining. For more information, click HERE.

Dipping the Quill Deeper: A Question of Worth - insight from Eva Marie Everson on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

Eva Marie Everson is the president of Word Weavers International, the director of Florida Christian Writers Conference, and the contest director for Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference. She is the multiple award-winning author of 40 books and countless articles and blogposts. She is also an award-winning speaker and a Bible teacher. Eva Marie is often seen at writers conferences across the States. She served as a mentor for the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild and taught as a guest professor at Taylor University in 2011. She and her husband make their home in Central Florida where they enjoy their grandchildren. They are owned by one persnickety cat.


  1. Wonderful and encouraging post! I've written those two questions in my journal and will be thinking and praying about them over the next week or so.


  2. Eva, this is amazing! God bless you and your work more abundantly. I have more to share. Kindly shoot me a mail at philiptony28@gmail.com