Value: the monetary worth of something; relative worth, utility, or importance
Yesterday there was a Power Team presentation at our high school. Their demonstrations of strength were quite impressive: breaking a baseball bat in half, curling an iron bar, rolling up a frying pan like it was a newspaper and tearing a phone book in half. Yes, these were pretty cool, but it was their message and another act that I admired even more: one Power Team member told how he grew up in an abusive home, and overcame this to become an NFL football player. He shared with the kids how they need to be kind to one another because you never know what someone is going through at home.
He then took out a $5 bill and asked the audience of high schoolers, “Who wants this?” Of course, most of the teens raised their hands. He then used the bill to mop off the sweat from his head and rubbed it in his sweaty armpits. Again he asked, “Who wants this?” Some hands went down this time. He then proceeded to crumple up the bill, step on it and kick it around. Each time he violated the $5 bill he asked, “Who wants this?” Not many hands were going up.
He continued to kick around the $5 bill and repeatedly asked, “Who wants this?” until one brave young man walked down from the bleachers and just picked it up. When he asked the student why he picked up a wadded up, dirty and smelly $5 bill, the young man answered, “It still has value”.
The Power Team’s message on value touched me because I also lived in an abusive home and was not valued as a child. Since I wasn’t valued, I did not value my own life, and so I looked to the ways of the world for acceptance and fulfillment. Thankfully, God provided a wonderful Christian man for me to marry, a military career, and 2 beautiful children — but I still didn’t couldn’t find worth in my life. I was 33 when God revealed to me what true value is and how much He loves me:
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Psalm 139:13-14 (NIV)
“Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” Matthew 6:26 (NIV)
“You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us..” Romans 5:6-8 (NIV)
“At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.” Titus 3:3-7 (NIV)