Posted By Aaron Marcelli on March 5, 2012
Eighteenth century philosopher Adam Smith is credited with a theory he called Paradox of Value. The thought behind this theory is that what one values is based on the current situation they are in. His most memorable illustration for this theory was a glass of water vs. a glass of diamonds. Given a choice between the two, almost any person in almost any situation would choose the glass of diamonds as it has much greater worth. However, a certain person in just the right circumstance (say, stuck in a dessert and facing dehydration) would actually choose the cup of water; better to live a little longer in hopes of being rescued than die with valuable diamonds in hand.
I was reminded of this theory when I heard a sermon in which the speaker asked the audience that if given the choice, would they choose a million dollars or having the holy spirit at work in their lives. To most people, having a million dollars and all the financial security that would bring, there would be no need for the leading of the spirit of God. But to some, particularly those who know God and long to have Him at work in their lives, there is no price to be put on the presence and activity of God in their lives.
Perhaps a good test to the level of our faith would be for what we were willing to give it up. Are we simply seeking God to give us things for which we would be willing to trade our relationship with Him in order to acquire? Or is our hunger for God so great we would pass on financial bliss in order to have the Creator of the world speaking into our lives? If such a choice were possible, would we be willing to choose God’s Spirit, if for nothing else to walk in His will and know we are not grieving Him?