Together in Spirit

Browsing From the Desk of Fr. Mike

Value - It's a personal & relationship thing

Dec 19, 2017

My parents were very careful to make sure that they evenly divided the value of the Christmas gifts they gave to me and my siblings. I think that they actually believed that we (as children) actually paid more attention to the value of the gift instead of just enjoying what was given. I remember, with some glee, when my brother was two years old and was given something fairly big and he spent most of Christmas afternoon playing with the box instead of the actual gift. My parents kept trying to draw him to the present himself (in their minds the thing that had value) but the box and the wrapping paper were a more substantial joy for my brother at the moment. On that Christmas Day, the package itself had more value for the two year old than the gift my parents paid money for.

There is something profound yet simple in that experience. We live in a world that assigns values that tend to be fairly artificial. Have you ever wondered about a car manufacturer’s suggested retail price “MSRP”?-is it really based on anything substantial? In the simplicity of a two year old, a box can be assigned a higher value than that which it contains. In Christian life the relationship with another person (and God) creates value. That value grows with time and experience. Sometimes when we are young and inexperienced, we can be fooled into thinking that someone’s value can be artificially assigned (look at the way we treat “celebrities” like the Kardashians). But with age and wisdom, hopefully we realize that profound truth which was first revealed to us in our mother’s arms. It is in relationship to the other that we know and grow in our own sense of value.

As some of my good friends and family members have passed into a new world of everlasting life and I remember them with fondness I feel the great value they passed on to me through their friendship. In this Christmas season let us rejoice in the relationship we have been given through the incarnation of God’s Son. He has passed on to us His immortal value and nothing else can measure against it’s greatness. It is something to be enjoyed, like a box to a two year old, rather than assigned artificially by others.


  • Caroline AmplatzPosted on 12/23/17

    Something to be enjoyed rather than artificially assigned by others. I like that. Some people thrive on artificial assignment of others. Wonder why .....



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