The definition of respect is: to hold people in high esteem, regard, recognition, honour and praise. People everywhere like to be respected, and a sure-fire way to shut down and push others away is to be disrespectful and condescending. People will automatically withdraw from this type of behaviour and treatment.
Unfortunately, we can often be more polite and respectful of people we don’t know than those we regularly see, such as our family or work colleagues.
But to change that narrative to be one where we are respectful and sowing good things into our lives is to think about how we would like others to treat us and how we would like those things we hold precious to be treated.
What does it mean to us to be respected? How do we want people to behave around our possessions such as our home and car?
How do we want them to talk and respond to us?
When we determine what this looks like for us, we can start practising treating others in the same way we would like to be treated. It’s doing to others what we would want done to us and loving our neighbour as ourselves.
“Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you. This is the essence of all that is taught in the law and the prophets” (Matthew 7:12 NLT)
The culture of heaven and God’s nature is one of respect and honour. God respects our right to choose and even disagree with Him, yet He still loves and cares for us. He asks us to do the same and love unconditionally.
“Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us.” (Ephesians 5:1-2)
To “Be devoted to one another in love. Honouring one another above ourselves.” (Romans 12:10)
I've learnt that choosing the way of respect softens and opens hearts to God’s best for us and also creates healthy, loving relationships in our lives.
Today I encourage you to take the opportunity to show love, respect and honour to those around you. Choose to be kind and respectful, knowing that as you do, God promises you’ll reap what you sow and receive a harvest of respect back.
“Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.” (Galatians 6:7)
Prayer: Lord, please help me to be respectful and honouring of other people around me today, especially those close to me. Please help me to imitate your ways as I esteem and think of others in all I do. In Jesus name Amen.