Life Lessons With Excel

I was teasing (read: annoying) my wife the other night, when something unexpected happened. I told her I would stop with my sarcastic criticism for a kiss. She instantly plastered a hand on each side of my face, pulled me in, and kissed me. You would have to know my wife & a little bit about Excel spreadsheets to know where I am going with this post.

So let's back up and review an Excel spreadsheet. Fortunately for you, I have one readily available for analyzing and making spiritual analogies with. Mind you the names on the spreadsheet were changed to protect the innocent:

In this particular sheet, there is a column for departments. I have highlighted a cell that demonstrates the whole point of this post. You see in that column there are a list of displayed values. In this case, the displayed value is "NM Shelf Land". However, that is NOT the actual or real value. The actual value is a VLOOKUP formula, which I am not going to get into. My whole point is that there is a displayed value and an actual value. In the words of Optimus Prime, "There's more than meets the eye."

Now let's talk about my wife. If I could define her love language in three words, they would be: gifts, talking & sarcasm. If I could define my love language in three words, they would be: physical touch, physical touch & physical touch. You see it with my kids all the time. I am constantly picking them up, hugging them, kissing them, rough housing with them etc. Notice how my love language didn't make her list.

So the displayed value of her sudden kiss was simple a sweet kiss. The actual value was leaps & bounds beyond that, because Amanda gets me. It was my wife connecting with me in a way that I understood.

I think there is room for an analogy here in our spiritual walk as well. When we attempt to cultivate spiritual growth, we more often than not lack the patience to see the actual value. We get caught up in the displayed value: going to Bible study, saying a prayer before each meal, etc. Paul puts it this way in 1 Corinthians 3:

For when one says, “I follow Paul,” and another, “I follow Apollos,” are you not mere human beings? What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants, through whom you came to believe—as the Lord has assigned to each his task. I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.

The actual value of our actions are in the hands of God. Those small acts of kindness do not go unnoticed by the Creator. So the next time you think about giving up, look for the actual value in your actions.

1 comment:

  1. So lovely and so true! Thank you for these words today!