EVALUATING YOUR VALUE-GIVING QUOTIENT
David had a perfect opportunity to kill King Saul. And why shouldn’t he? Saul made David’s life a living hell. But when the opportunity arose to get even, settle the score, and retaliate, David walked away. Why? Because he valued Saul’s life. In a later conversation between the two, David said to Saul, “As surely as I valued your life today, so may the LORD value my life and deliver me from all trouble” (1 Samuel 26:24). A different translation of that same verse has David saying to Saul, “…as your life was precious this day in my sight…”
David valued Saul’s life. David thought Saul’s life was precious in his sight. He respected it. He esteemed it. The feeling, however, was certainly not mutual. Saul had a strange love/hate relationship with David at best. He was extremely jealous of him. He even tried to kill David on several occasions. Yet, David placed great value on Saul’s life.
Let’s evaluate our own “value-giving” quotient. What’s the best way to communicate that we value others? How do we best demonstrate that the lives of others are precious to us? How do we practically give worth and value to those we come in contact with?
Here are 7 checkpoints:
- Initiate conversation–Don’t wait for the other person to engage you. You start it. You pull the trigger.
- Ask about things that light her up–You validate others by letting them share with you the things that jazz them up. But be careful about being impatient here. Let them talk. Abrupt disinterest sometimes de-values faster than you realize.
- Look him in the eye–Personally, this one is really tough for me…especially when there may be a history of hurt or wrong-doing. But frequent eye contact says, “I’m listening…I’m engaged…I’m mindful of what you’re saying.”
- Call her by name—Dale Carnegie once said, “There’s nothing sweeter than the sound of thine own name.” Tis true. Once again, when you use someone’s name throughout your conversation, it brings worth and value to them in ways we perhaps don’t fully understand.
- Say what you mean and mean what you say–I used to frequently say that phrase to the high school girls I coached. In other words, don’t just give lip service. People see right through that junk. Be sincere. Be honest. Be genuine.
- When you leave, wish her well–“Have a great week.” “It was so good to see you again and catch up.” “Enjoy your vacation.” Simple well-wishing goes a long way.
- Bullet prayer him–When you part, send up a quick bullet prayer. “God, thanks for giving me the opportunity to chat with him today. I pray that You will bless him and his family. Give him _______________ (filling in that blank with whatever you gleaned he needs from your conversation).”
If David valued and esteemed and respected the life of a guy who hated him, how much more should we value the lives of folks we encounter day-to-day?
So…Who do you need to give worth and value to today? Which of the 7 checkpoints do you need to improve on?