It’s 4:30 am in Texas y’all and I am wide awake. I’ve gone back to sleep before only to wake up way more tired than if I had just stayed up and gotten ready for work. So, here I am. Loving this quiet time at home before this hustle bustle family life of ours begins.
I took notes Sunday at church that I wanted to write down immediately (before I forgot) but I ended up sidetracked with making lunch, hanging with the kids and watching Sunday night football. Go Cowboys! If I don’t write fresh I tend to forget lots of important details but I’m going to do my best.
Honor … insert a deep breath and long exhale here because this topic has always been a bit challenging for me. Look, I tried to read Honor’s Reward. I’ve tried to treat others as better than myself. But 100% of the time thus far I have failed at the challenge of showing honor to others at all times (especially to people I don’t like or who cut me off in traffic). Oh sure, if I respect you I will show you honor. But if I don’t …. That’s a blog for another day. Anyway… The core text of the sermon was:
Romans 12:9-18 (New King James Version)
Behave Like a Christian
9 Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. 10 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; 11 not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; 12 rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; 13 distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality.
14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. 16 Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion.
17 Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. 18 If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.
And at that point, I was ready to close my journal and head back home LOL. I give up! My mind immediately went to worst case scenario. Who do I despise the most? If that person stood before me today could I – or would I – show him or her honor? Hmmm… I can probably say that I would either shut down and shut off or avoid the encounter altogether. My next thought was wondering why I pick “worst case scenario” when I mentally challenge myself with “spiritual tasks”. When I start exercising again after a hiatus I start with goals that are reachable such as making sure to exercise at least 3 times a week for 30 minutes or to exercise daily even if it’s only for 10 minutes, to take the stairs instead of the elevator and to eat at least 4 servings of fruits and veggies each day. I don’t start health challenges by expecting myself to exercise for 2 hours a day surviving on fruits and vegetables alone. Yet, when faced with challenges like Honor – always being sure to show honor to others – I give up before I even try. I’m relying on myself and my own willpower to succeed instead of depending on the measure of grace I’ll have in the moment. I’m overthinking it and becoming defeated mentally before I’m even in the situation. Is there anyone else out there who is their own worst enemy?
The preacher gave several examples of honor such as saluting our military. But the example I loved the most was when he said that if he had a meeting with Billy Graham he would be so excited, he would show up early and that he wouldn’t be on his phone during the meeting. And honestly, he should treat everyone he meets as though they are Billy Graham. That would truly be honoring others. (He mentioned being on time too which I really struggle with but I can only handle so many topics at one time ok LOL).
Challenge to self: Who do I respect or admire the most? Can I treat others the way I would treat that person?
- Humility always comes before honor (Pro 15:33)
- Honor is a decision. It is not deserved.
- Honor is powerful.
Jesus showed honor (value and worth) to the woman caught in adultery and the woman at the well. He treated people who did not deserve it with value. Often people do things (live their life poorly) when they don’’ feel they have worth or value. Jesus showed them honor anyway and that is what we should do too.
He pointed out the difference in how we tend to treat people who are rich versus people who are poor. How we tend to treat family such as siblings that we don’t respect (his sibling is an addict and he mentioned he did not properly show him honor for years but that’s another journal note).
And before I forget, there are other topics that have been on my mind that I don’t have time to journal this morning but that I definitely want to write down before I forget:
- About the woman whose son died this week unexpectedly who spoke Sunday (and thankfully the preacher said that things like that shouldn’t happen as opposed to the cringe worthy statement that all things happen for a reason…);
- Though it may feel like we’re living in the desert, we’re truly Iiving in the land of milk and honey with shoes that never wear out (and I need to be grateful);
- A “hands-off” God (aka and God gave them over to their sinful desires);
- A reminder to show honor to addicts and those with low self-worth (as opposed to the thought pattern that “they made their choices so now they have to deal with the consequences”). Though that may be true, they are fighting their own battles. Putting them down or failing to show honor won’t change their behavior. Only God can change people. (Insert BG’s addiction song);
- The illegal gospel (Canada);
- Johnathan’s Place.
Coffee cheers your way guys 🙂