I have always sought to honor my wife. From the seemingly little things like opening car doors for her, making sure her needs are met before others, seeking her advice, and keeping an open line of communication with her, to the importance of making sure that she never feels left out of conversations when we are with other people. I’ve also attempted to never talk negatively about her… even in jest… in private to others or when in public like at work, church, in the neighborhood or at extended family gatherings. As far as I am concerned, my wife and our family’s private business is just that… private! If I have a problem with my wife or family I will gently go to them with my concerns.
I have been around too many people that I have worked with, church member’s or extended family members who will joke about and belittle their spouses when gathered with others and to be honest, it actually hurts me to witness this, for I would consider it to be very disrespectful.
Now that my wife can no-longer care for herself and verbally communicate with others, I have found myself putting aside my own desires and humbling myself in the face of some distasteful things… simply because I have chosen to continually respect and honor her in the knowledge of how she would have lovingly handled the negative situations. In the long run… it is worth it because she is worth it to me!
Romans 4:20-21 as translated in the God’s Word translation, also got me to thinking about honor and respect when it comes to following the directions that Papa God gives to us as we seek Him in the affairs of our daily lives. I was kind of thinking about this out loud a few hours ago as my wife and I were on our weekly pilgrimage to our local Super Walmart for groceries. This scripture says that “He (Abraham) didn't doubt God's promise out of a lack of faith. Instead, giving honor to God for the promise, he became strong because of faith and was absolutely confident that God would do what he promised.”
Most Bible versions like the King James say “giving glory to God” but a quick reference to the original Greek will explain that the term “In the New Testament always (speaks of) a good opinion concerning someone resulting in praise, honor and glory.” (Thayer’s) So, from what I can deduce, the thought of giving “honor to God” is very apropos in its usage here.
When I first read this yesterday, I was struck with the revelation that by taking the time to seek out God’s will in His Word for any particular situation in your life and then taking the corresponding actions in faith to release the power of God into your need, you are in effect… according to this scripture… HONORING God! But the more I thought about it on the winding road through the deep green tobacco fields on the way to town today, I realized that this is only the first step!
The real test of one’s commitment, respect and honor to God comes when you hit the bumps in the road along the way to the manifestation of your answered prayer, that want to shake your stand of faith! For us it was a few good meaning (I hope) folks who did their best to dissuade us from obeying God. For others it might be what you are physically seeing before you that is contrary to the end effect you’re believing for or a lack of finances, or ill health or… anything that tries to get your eyes off the prize that God has promised you in His Word.
What I began to see today was that the commitment to seek and then follow God’s plan in order to trust in Him for His provision was like when Piper and I said “I Do” some 43 years ago! We made a commitment or contract with each other back then that we have always taken most seriously and aim to NEVER break! In my way of thinking, it is the same as when I step out in faith that is founded on a living Word based agreement with God.
When the pressures come, I have a decision to make. Will I honor my commitment or contract with God or… honor the person or thing that is putting pressure on me to give up and let go of God’s promise? I also had the thought that once I make that contract with God, the rest is in His hands. Therefore, when I choose Him over someone or something else, the outside party has to deal directly with Him!
You see at that point, I am taken out of the equation and whatever the person(s) or things that come against me may say or do in retaliation to my not agreeing with them is, in actuality, between them and God! And that frees me from any negative emotions that I might have otherwise felt and have to deal with!
Hummm… what do you think? The more I investigate the scriptures, the more I see in the “fine print” at the bottom of the commitments or contracts I make with God when it comes to acting on His Word! He always has my back… and yours as well!
Praise God! Have a terrific weekend, and as you do, keep telling yourself… “That I am expecting Papa God to always have my back when I step out in faith that is firmly based on the truth of His Word!”