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Floccinaucinihilipilification - the false accusation.

Jared Williams


Floccinaucinihilipilification. That's a long word! It's one of the longest English words I know that's not some scientific/medical term. It means, rather simply, to determine something as valueless. 


The epidemic of depression - whether the case is obvious or locked behind closed doors - flourishes upon the question of "what good am I?" Self doubt and guilt - put on or not - consistently feeds a mindset that obsesses over image and perception. One failed action or one angry retort can overthrow and counteract a multitude of compliments. A perceived dislike will remain so because pity and sorrow don't like company. 


But your value is not defined by others. It isn't even defined by you! 


Let me explain. There are typically two major types of value - intrinsic, and extrinsic. Extrinsic is market value. Prices are determined by supply and demand - upon what people are willing to spend on said object - how valuable the item is to the individual. But humans should never be bought or sold. 


There is also intrinsic value. Although an orange has extrinsic value in how much it is worth to someone, it also has intrinsic value - value within itself. We value an orange for it's nutritional values (as well as taste). This comes from the orange itself, not from outside of itself. 


If you look at something that is man-made, say a cup-holder. There can be differing extrinsic value - if a child made the cup-holder, the value on the market will not be very high - perhaps one dollar, if the boy's lucky. But to the mother of the child, that cup-holder has great extrinsic value due to it's sentimental value. That sentimental value doesn't come from the cup-holder itself, but from the one who made it. 


However, an intrinsic value doesn't change. The cup-holder's value comes from it's purpose - that does not change regardless of who owns the cup-holder or how they view the cup-holder or even how high or low the cup-holder is priced. 


So when considering a human's value, what we should look at is not the extrinsic value, which is unmeasurable to begin with, but with the intrinsic value - which never changes. 


I would do a magic trick for my students every year to illustrate this point. I would fold a dollar bill in a particular way while asking my students a couple different questions. "How much is this $1 dollar bill worth? If I crumpled it up and threw it in the trash, how much is it worth? If I get it wet, how much is it worth? If I bury it in the ground, how much is it worth? If I get it dirty, or spit on it, how much is it worth?" The answer never changes . My students answer every time, it's worth one dollar. I then punch a hole through it with a pencil and ask, "What if I tear it, how much is it worth?" they answer, one dollar. I then take the pencil out and open the dollar bill to show the dollar has no holes in it anywhere, and I answer them, "Yes, it's still worth one dollar. Nothing you say or do to this one dollar bill will change it's value." 


Now the dollar bill finds it's value from an extrinsic source - the ones who made it - and then we all agree to accept that value that was placed upon the bill by it's creators. But ultimately the dollar bill's value comes from it's purpose - of how it was created to be used. The same goes for all created things - it's value and purpose comes from what it was originally designed to do.


Therefore, our purpose ultimately comes from the one who created us, and we cannot change our value - no matter what we do, what we say, what others do to us, or what others say or think. If evolution is correct in it's theory of the origin of life - that we came about by pure chance - then our life has no meaning and we have no purpose or intrinsic value. But thank goodness, that is not the case! We are created beings, and God has told us how intrinsically valuable we are. He has said that as the creator of the universe, He knew us before we were born, that He had a plan for our lives long before we took our first breath, that He knows us by name, that the very hairs on our head are numbered, that not even a sparrow falls to the ground without Him knowing, and yet we are much more important than a sparrow. 


Floccinaucinihilipilification should never occur when speaking of a person. Far from being valueless, we are all priceless. Our value is so astronomically high, it would be wrong to put a price tag upon a human life. Period! And nothing we do or say and nothing anyone else can do or say could ever change that. We are valuable because God created us! We are valuable because God has a purpose for us! We are valuable because we are God's children. We are valuable because God loves us. We are valuable because God says so, and He's the only one wise enough to know. All we have to do, is trust Him. 


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