The phrase “value-added” has become a catch-phrase in a variety of circles. Simply put, it means enhancing something in some way, thereby adding to its value.
We might think in terms of “new and improved”… or “better than ever”… or “lasts longer”… or double the amount for the same money. As a culture, we look for value-added. We want to see the basic a little better. Whether or not you are familiar with the label “value-added,” we are all familiar with the principle.
It is a bit of a puzzle that, as a culture, we don’t seem to comprehend a primary reason why humankind is here on earth. It is all about value-added. God creates humans to tend his garden, to be a part of the process of creation. Our responsibility is to accept and embrace God’s gracious abundance and build upon it, add value to it, and return it to God and his purposes.
Perhaps this concept is hard for us to see because we usually expect our efforts to be quickly and tangibly rewarded in some way. When we do well we anticipate some tangible recognition. But with God, all that we need is always provided, and his love is always forthcoming. So there is not necessarily something that stands out as a tangible reward. Our primary reward comes in being in harmony with God’s yearnings for us.
We tend to think of adding value in terms of improving on something and then seeing a greater payoff for that improvement. We tend to think in terms of short-term. We also tend to think in terms of what we believe we or our loved-ones need today. But God is the God of eternity. Everything that we do to participate in the process of creation has value in God’s eternal plan. We may not see the results now, but every creative effort we make in accordance with his yearnings matters.
Stewardship is at the very core of our beings as creations of God. Stewardship is value-added. We take the abundance with which God graces us, care for it, and to the best of our ability to build upon it.
We may become so overwhelmed with the demands of our lives that we tend to overlook the yearnings of our God. We tend to get caught up in thriving and succeeding according to the standards of our culture. Yet, what really matters is being faithful to the loving desires of our Creator for us.
Every moment, in every act, our call is to add to God’s creation, to steward his gracious gifting to us, to do well in God’s eyes. We are to use everything that we are, do, and have to God’s glory; to acts of creating… to adding value.