For some strange reason, we live in a time where people have to behave perfectly for us to honor them; we, however, expect to be honored, even when we make mistakes. This inequity greatly affects our relationships. It puts too much pressure on others, setting our expectations at an impossible level. It also leads to personal excuses when we fail.
So, this week I have tried to think through a more reasonable approach to honoring others. Here are four conclusions and goals:
Reach out to others from a heart of love, leaving the door of relationships wide open. We all fail each other at times. That’s human. When others fail me, I don’t want them to wonder if reconciliation is possible. I want them to know that forgiveness and moving forward is offered to them.
With eyes wide open to the frailty of others, I choose to live a life of reward, deliverance and giving. It’s my desire to refresh others by being a gift to them. I want them to be glad we met. I also want to be a person who encourages deliverance; we are bound by so many things. What a joy to realize that honoring another can free us from what binds us.
I realize my choices today could have long-reaching consequences. There are some things that cannot be changed. Decisions of the past by others affect me today. However, those things should not restrict my honoring them or others. I can break the cycle of those choices by making different choices. My choices today might affect the next generations. Amazingly, today’s choices honors others that I may never meet.
Honoring others means that I delight to show mercy, swallowing hurts with forgiveness. Forgiveness is the cornerstone of honoring others.
Last weekend, my wife and I tackled a corner of our yard, which needed attention. It was not as beautiful as other parts of our yard. So, we set out to give this area our attention. Seven hours later, we were amazed at the transformation brought about by a simple rock border, good soil and hardy plants.
I think this is the point of this week. Honoring others means that we see beyond what is there to what can be.