A few years ago, God began to teach me about honor. It began with a simple lesson.
I had received a personal check in the mail. It wasn’t common as most checks that come to the ministry are for the ministry. Every now and then, perhaps a couple times a year, someone will send me a personal financial gift. Or a small token of their appreciation in form of a prayer shawl. These gifts always touch the deepest part of my heart. They are unexpected hugs from God!
Just a few days after I received that personal check, I received another personal check. A couple weeks later, I received another personal check. I began to say, “okay, God what is going on?” A few more weeks went by, and I received an email from a partner, asking me for my favorite colors. She wanted to make me a prayer shawl. I was overwhelmed! My cup was running over!
A few nights later, I was listening to a teaching, the man was talking about mission trips. He shared how they honored people in other countries. He said they gave them gifts to show they were honoring them. It jumped in my spirit, and I felt the Lord was telling me that this is what had happened with me. These wonderful friends were honoring me for what I had sown into their lives by giving me gifts. I was overwhelmed at God’s goodness and the goodness of the people who had honored me. It started me on a path of studying honor a little more in-depth.
1 Timothy 5 tells us to honor those who labor in word and doctrine.
God, often prompts me to honor those who have sown the Word of God into my life. He will speak to me to give them a personal offering. Or to purchase a gift that they will love. I have learned to look for ways to honor people who sow into my life. I listen and I watch for clues to things they would love. And then I honor them with those things.
When I received those personal gifts from partners, I knew God was showing me two things. One was that these were, indeed, gifts of honor for the seeds I had sown into their lives. And two, I was beginning to reap a harvest from the honor seeds I had sown to others.
To honor means to estimate the value of, to hold dear, to count someone or something as a great price and to revere.
Honor is often one of the most neglected virtues in the lives of many Christians. It’s sad. The truth is those you dishonor can never be a true source of blessing in your life.
It doesn’t matter if the person is great or small, if God has brought them into your life, you are to honor them. I once heard a minister say, “Your future is determined by who you have chosen to honor. You must have a code of honor. Honor is a seed that will outlast a lifetime.”
I believe honor is a seed that will last a lifetime. I believe honor opens doors of favor. Through the years I have learned that dishonor is one of the quickest ways to close the door of favor in our lives.
I also believe that all honor is born out of a heart that is surrendered to the King of Kings.
Jesus Himself said in Mark 6:4, A prophet is not without honor except in his own country, among his own relatives, and in his own house.
Often, people, through familiarity, begin to devalue those God has put in their life. When you become too familiar with people, you stop seeing the gift of God that is in them. This will lead to dishonor. When I think of the danger of forgetting to honor through familiarity, I think of Kelita Deems.
I work closely with her. She is a close friend. However, every few weeks, I get a paypal alert letting me know I have received money with a note which says, a gift of honor. It is always from Kelita. We work closely together on a daily basis; we are very familiar with one another. Still, she never forgets what I sow into her spiritually. She always honors what I sow into her life. I know if she is doing that for me, she is doing it for others. One day soon, she will reach a tipping point of seeds of honor and God will overwhelm her with HIS honor. It will come from every direction.
There are things in our lives that God will get to us through our seeds of honoring others. There is no other way we will get them; they will inevitably come through a life of being one who honors others. We reap what we sow – if we honor others, God will honor us.
It is a principle of God that will not fail. Honor those who are important in your life. Honor those who speak into your life. Honor those who help bring you through rough seasons. Honor those who stand by you when no one else will. Honor those who continue to speak the Word to you even when you don’t want to hear it. Honor those to go to God on your behalf and pray until they get an answer. When you do, God will honor you and He will cause men and women to honor you.