Man’s-eye-view

mans eye view

I sometimes think that men get a bad rap when it comes to how women see themselves. I’ve written before about women’s craving to seek the admiration of men.

The men in our lives – our fathers,  boyfriends, brothers, husbands – can, and do, have a significant effect on how we see ourselves, our value and our self-worth.

Over the past week or so, as part of the Ending Violence Against Women campaign, the world has been raising awareness of those men who use their power over women for unimagineable cruelty.

Men have the power to make women feel small and insignifcant, ugly.

So I asked two great men – Darrell Vesterfelt of Prodigal Magazine in the US, and Carl Beech, head of Christian Vision for Men – to write guest posts on this blog to the women in their lives, telling them why they love and value them; why they are beautiful.

Have a read:

To my daughters: you are beautiful to me – by Carl Beech

To my wife: you are valuable, beyond measure – by Darrell Vesterfelt

To my wife: you are valuable, beyond measure

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Guest post: by Darrell Vesterfelt, CEO of the Prodigal Media Group
We were driving home from vacation with my in-laws last week when my wife looked over at me and said: “Why did you marry me?”“What do you mean?” I asked.“I mean, sometimes I don’t even feel worthy to be married to you. Like I’m not good enough for you, and I’m just waiting for the other shoe to drop, and for you to have the same realisation.”My heart dropped.How could Ally not see how valuable she was to me? What was it that was calling her value into question?I started to think about how I could explain to her how much she is worth to me, and the image that came to mind was an auction. It might seem a little strange, but hear me out.

At an auction, an item is only as valuable as what someone is willing to pay for it. So a piece of art might be ‘valued’ at $1,500 by an appraiser, but that doesn’t really matter. Because when paddles start flying, and the stakes get higher and higher, you’ll see how much that painting is really worth. If someone pays $50,000 for that piece of art, that’s what it’s worth.

Forget $1,500. It’s worth $50,000 now.

What if the bidding war went on, and the item sold for $2 million? What then? Then the item is worth $2 million. You can have an appraiser give all the evaluations you want, but at auction, every item is worth what someone will pay for it.

What is someone willing to pay for you?

For my wife, I was willing to pay my life for hers on our wedding day. In one sense I auctioned myself for her, and she for me. That kind of exchange is powerful, and it is why we perform such a beautiful ceremony in front of our friends and family. It’s part of why marriage is so sacred.

We are worth each other’s life. We deserve each other.

But people don’t always recognise our worth. It is why so many of us live insecure.That is why it is important for our lives to be anchored to something greater than us. Our lives were purchased in the death of the Son of God. That means the ‘price’ of our life so to speak was increased from what we could accomplish to what He could accomplish. Our lives were bought with God. We are worth His life.
That begs the question, what is God worth?
The pursuit of understanding God’s worth is something that seems beyond measure, completely unfathomable, outside of our grasp. But the more we come to comprehend the worth of Jesus, and the worth we have because of him, the more we are able to live as if it is true.
Whatever God is worth, you are worth that. Do you believe that? Are you living like that is what you’re worth?
People who live like they know what they’re worth live in freedom. Freedom from worry, freedom from striving, freedom from being someone who they’re not.
When we forget how much we’re worth, it helps to have people who ‘gospel’ us back to truth. They act as reminders, and maybe even teachers to us, schooling us in our inherent value. We can do that for each other. That’s what I did for Ally that day.
I reminded her that she has infinite value, that she doesn’t have to do a single thing to earn it and that no one can take it away. It doesn’t matter what any appraiser says. A “buyer” has spoken. He’s lifted his paddle. That’s what she’s worth.
That’s what you’re worth.

Your value does not lie in the ever-changing circumstances of life, or the fickle feeling that you are beautiful, or accepted, or capable. It goes beyond good hair days, and beautiful clothes and perfect figure. It stands outside of works-oriented value. You did nothing to receive your value. It was freely given, so there is nothing you can do to lose it.

The only thing we’re called to do is live in a reality where our value defies human reason.You are valuable, beyond measure. Do you believe that?
ImageDarrell Vesterfelt is the CEO of the Prodigal Media Group – a storytelling firm based in Minneapolis where he lives with his wife Ally. Darrell is the original #unblogger. You can connect with him on Twitter.
Image by Creationswap