So, what are the things that you value in life?  All of the recent talk surrounding the “debt ceiling” has caused me to pause and spend some time thinking back on my many days spent studying Economics in school.  As I’ve begun to do this I’ve been reminded of the complexities of the subject and frankly how little of it that actually made sense to me back then.  I mean the whole course of study seemed to be characterized by confusing theories where opposing forces reigned supreme.  Just consider a few of these; macro vs. micro, supply vs. demand, consumption vs. production, Keynesian vs. free-market, etc.  Needless to say I was forever grateful to the professor when the test showed up as multiple-choice instead of essay form.  To be sure, my passing grade might have been significantly challenged if I would have actually had to explain with any sort of granularity the intricacies of the opposing theories.  But life itself has taught me more than any textbook or course could have possibly ever done; valuable lessons from an economics of another kind…the economics of value. 

My observation of life over the years has brought me to this conclusion; most people (including me) know the cost of everything but few people know the value of anything.  Rest assured if you checked with my wife she’d be the first to tell you that I’m a master at assessing the costs for a particular purchase, activity, etc.  Very rarely, however, do I take time to consider what the value the expense might bring to our family or our individual lives. Why is it that our default setting on how we gauge so much of life is seen through the lens of what it costs us?  What if we could reprogram the settings of our lives and see the costs of life’s experiences and encounters through the value of the people, places and things that make up the inventory of our existence?  Why, even the “opportunity cost” of what might seem like a sacrifice to us could then be seen in light of the immeasurable value it might just bring to another person.  And lest we forget, it might just be there would be a radical change in our conversation about the “debt ceiling.”  After all, aren’t we encouraged to “let no debt remain outstanding but for the debt to love one another.”  It certainly seems therein lies not a confusing economic theory but a timeless truth that will lead us to the true value in life.  Peace.