DO YOU KNOW HOW VALUABLE YOU ARE?
Do you know how valuable you are?
We all long to have value, to feel worthy of love and respect. There are two kinds of value, however: ‘intrinsic’ and ‘extrinsic’ value. If we say something has ‘intrinsic’ value, we mean that it has value in and of itself – it is valuable simply because it is what it is. We find intrinsic value, for example, in things that are beautiful, costly or rare. A painting by Vincent Van Gogh has intrinsic value because it is a thing of rare artistic wonder. On the other hand, we say that a thing has ‘extrinsic’ value when it has value simply because it can perform a certain function. This kind of value is based on the performance of some task, or living up to some expectation. Extrinsic value is fickle: once a thing stops performing properly we discard it. There are millions, even billions, of people in this world who feel that the only value they have is the extrinsic kind. If they stop ‘doing the job’, if their performance fails to match up, they think they’ll be thrown onto the scrap heap. Human beings crave intrinsic value. We want to be loved and prized for who we are, not for what we can do.
A oft quoted verse from the Bible Romans 3:23-24 says; ‘For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.’
That’s the good news of Christianity. It’s not by our works that we’re made right with God. He doesn’t love us because we’ve earned it. His love, his acceptance, is based purely on his grace, his favour. We were fallen, yes, but we were still worth dying for, simply because he chose to love us! You have intrinsic value, because God thinks so much of you that He sent His son Jesus to pay your debt of sin on that cruel cross so many years ago. Your gift of salvation might be free but it cost Jesus everything to purchase your freedom – don’t forget that this Easter weekend.
This article was first posted on Alfred Kua‘s blog May 2, 2009.