True Value

I love to go yard-saling! Finding little treasures in the midst of someone else’s discarded junk is priceless…even if I’m only willing to pay a quarter for it. Where I live the first weekend of October is always the Highway 60 yard sale. Over 200 miles of yard sales, craft sales, garage sales & rummage sales stretch from Elizabethtown to Paducah: it’s a dream come true!

I’ve started taking pictures of all the interesting things I see at these sales. People will LITERALLY sell anything! Underwear, half-empty bottles of cheap shampoo, used coloring books… At one sale someone was even trying to sell their mom! Actually, they were selling a portrait of their mom. Leaning against a table full of baby clothes was a 18×24 Olan Mills portrait of a woman in her Sunday best gracefully tilting her head just right for the camera. The portrait was labeled “Mom” and they were asking $5 for it. As I stood their wondering what kind of people sell a picture of their mom… and what kind of person would buy such a picture, the homeowner walked over and marked the picture’s price down to $2!  I’m sensing some family issues.


This made me think, though: How much do I value the people God has put in my path? When I first began my journey as a pastor’s wife, Sunday mornings were like a whirlwind. I spent the few minutes before and after each service running around (well, not literally running since we NEVER run in church) shaking the hands of Every. Single. Person. I felt like one of those celebrities or sports figures that walk past their screaming fans, absently scribbling their autograph over and over but never actually looking anyone in the eye. I realized that if I was going to make a real difference in the lives of the people around me, then I needed to focus on quality over quantity. I needed to slow down and take the time to value people.

Now on Sundays I ask the Lord to show me who needs to be shown their value today. Is it the little children who come to church without their parents? I’m going to pull them onto my lap and give them as many hugs as they can stand. Is it the stressed-out volunteer who is overwhelmed with all the stuff on their plate? I’m going to applaud them and compliment them and try to communicate that their labor is not in vain. Is it the elderly widower who lives alone and spends much of his day missing his wife? I’m going to sit down beside him and let him tell me all about his garden or his grandkids or the many adventures he had while in the military.

God loves people more than anything. I want to value people as much as He does! And, by the way, if you’re ever at a yard sale and see my picture on the clearance table- please buy it- even if it’s just for the frame! J


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