It’s all a numbers game, isn’t it? Or that’s the way it seems these days. Think about the last time you saw your doctor. If yours is like most physicians he or she probably presented you with a bunch of numbers – cholesterol, glucose, triglycerides, PSA, granulocyte (whatever that is) – all of which are supposed to tell you whether you are healthy or not. Really! Now don’t get me wrong, all those numbers are important, for they may be indicators or warning signs of issues affecting your health. But numbers in and of themselves are not necessarily proof of the state of our health any more than fingerprints at a crime scene are proof someone is guilty of a crime, they are only evidence. The ultimate determination of our health is how we feel, act, look, how well everything is functioning and how much energy we have. And that cannot be measured with numbers; it is only an experience we can somehow attempt to describe.
It still feels like everything is a numbers game, though, doesn’t it? In business it’s all about sales and profit numbers; in education it’s all about test scores; in sports it’s all about scoring the most points. And even when there is no logical criteria for measuring we think something up such as “how would you rate her beauty or his looks on a scale of one to ten?” Really! Since when can beauty and good looks be measured in numbers? It can’t; it is only an observation or experience we can somehow attempt to describe.
Life, health, beauty, family, love, joy, relationships, goodness, mercy and forgiveness – the most important things in life cannot be measured in numbers. Health is health not just a cholesterol reading; business is providing products and services to other human beings not just sales and profit numbers; education is about learning and the ability to think, not just test scores; and sports is about striving for excellence on the field of competition, not just scoring the most points. Above all these are life experiences that can never be adequately measured in numbers, that at best we can only attempt to describe.
Is it all really just a numbers game? I don’t think so because the most important things in life are beyond anything numbers can ever measure.