A few weeks ago, our family made a last-minute, late-night trip to the movie theater to watch Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, the documentary film that tells the story of Fred Rogers and his popular children’s TV program, Mister Rogers Neighborhood. To be honest with you, I never really watched the show when I was younger. I guess I must have been “too cool” for it or something like that. But after seeing the movie, I sure wished I would have.
I left the theater that night wanting to learn more about the man, so I found and read a book called The Simple Faith of Mister Rogers by Amy Hollingsworth. The wisdom and truths found throughout it were both convicting and inspiring.
Although there was so much in the book I would like to share with you, here is one of my favorite parts. It's a story about an interview between the author and Mister Rogers that took place soon before his death.
Every Person is Unique
“If you had one final broadcast,” I asked, “one final opportunity to address your television neighbors, and you could tell them the single most important lesson of your life, what would you say?”
He paused a moment and then said, ever so slowly: "Well, I would want [those] who were listening somehow to know that they had unique value, that there isn’t anybody in the whole world exactly like them and that there has never been and there never will be. And that they are loved by the Person who created them, in a unique way. If they could know that and really know it and have that behind their eyes, they could look with those eyes on their neighbor and realize, “My neighbor has unique value too; there’s never been anybody in the whole world like my neighbor, and there never will be.”
"If they could value that person—if they could love that person—in ways that we know that the Eternal loves us, then I would be very grateful."