Photos and Commentary©2023 by Robert Howson
Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Some of you may be fans of the T.V. show “Antiques Roadshow” which I find myself watching from time to time. I’m sure some who watch it are well-informed connoisseurs and have valuable assets stored away in the attic just waiting to be discovered. But I also suspect the majority are individuals just like me who are fascinated by the value placed on sometimes seemingly insignificant items. Value, like beauty, is sometimes in the eye of the beholder.

For example, if it had been up to me, I wouldn’t have called it the Golden-hooded Tanager. To me, what caught my attention were the beautiful blue colors on the body, face, and wings. Then again, maybe all the blue names were already taken, who knows. To add to its beauty, in the proper light varied shades of purple and turquoise are also apparent. It’s not that I feel this neotropical species was treated unfairly, it’s just that I feel attention was not given where it was most deserved.

In The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin he wrote: “I conceive that great part of the miseries of mankind are brought upon them by the false estimates they have made of the value of things, and by their giving too much for their whistles.” The prophet Zechariah recorded the Lord’s frustration with His people when they refused to see His goodness, to overlook the worth He placed upon them: “And the Lord said to me, ‘Throw it to the potter—the handsome price at which they valued me!’ So I took the thirty pieces of silver and threw them to the potter at the house of the Lord.” (Zechariah 11:13 NIV) Sad, the prophetic value later shown in reality.