Each of us needs to determine what is worth valuing in our life
Ross L. Talbott
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
As we search for identity, both personally and corporately, we need to identify the major driving forces.
A primary force that shapes identity is our sense of values. What is really of value in your life? How does it fit in with the values of others?
Sense of values can be peculiar to a family, a community or even a nation.
The entire thrust of a person’s life is determined by what they value most.
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Also, there is, fortunately, a huge disparity and diversity among humans.
Since our sense of values is so important to our identity, it is important to gain some objectivity. Try to step back and analyze how you got to this point and understand its true value.
I read of a man who felt successful because he had a gold brick he buried in his back yard.
He would periodically take it out to admire and polish it. Someone saw him with it and sneaked in during the night and stole it.
When the man discovered it gone, he went berserk. A neighbor, hearing the commotion, figured out what had happened. The neighbors advice to the man was, “Just get a rock, paint it yellow and bury it. It will do you just as much good.”
Maybe the person who sold the Batman comic book for $1 million was smarter than the guy who bought it. Unless of course, he just went out and bought a gold brick.
One doesn’t need to look very far to find a class of people who value large homes, fancy cars, expensive entertainment and shall we say, intimate physical relations without commitment.
The bottom line problem is your definition or understanding of the word “value.”
Some people believe that truth is subject to various interpretations. What’s true for you is your truth; lots of luck with that concept.
In a real sense, value is subject to each person’s needs and understanding. What is your gold brick? Is it athletic success, for which all you have left is a gold brick on the mantle?
How about a house in Aspen or maybe a high rise apartment with a great view or that snowmobile in the garage?
Is value to you a matter of power or ego?
When we stop thinking of value in terms of possessions, position or power, a whole new vista opens before us.
In Matthew 6:19, Jesus is quoted as saying, “Lay not up for yourselves treasures on earth where moth and rust consume … but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven.”
If you think this mortal earth is all there is and there are no eternal consequences then go for the gold bricks.
On the other hand, actions of personal sacrifice produce a treasure of value that no one can steal.
From an eternal perspective, the gold bricks become of little value while relationships, service, integrity, generosity, truthfulness and the like generate real lasting value.
If your teacher is Hollywood or the television you could just as well paint a rock yellow and put it in the safe.
The true value in a family is created by loving parents.
The value in a community is created by those who serve unselfishly to make it safe and beautiful. The value in an entire nation is a result of people with integrity helping to provide a nation bathed in freedom, generosity and opportunity. There needs to be a sense of voluntary corporate responsibility rather than selfish dependency.
In today’s political atmosphere we are wallowing in lack of trust, greed, power struggles and immorality.
May God help us to find what is of real value!
Ross L. Talbott lives in New Castle.
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