Honor

27 It is not good to eat much honey,
Nor is it glory to search out one’s own glory.
Proverbs 25:27 (NASB95)

I used to seek honor for myself; out of pride, motivated by insecurity. (But the honor I sought is not the honor that Jesus has). I wanted other people to tell me how great I was to drown out my “silently loud,” deep down, almost hidden from myself, constant fear that I am inadequate, I don’t measure up, I’m a failure. I am repulsed by people like me. I have an inherent aversion to those who are proud. My gut revulsion is because these people don’t recognize that I am the most important person there is, not them.

Jesus did not seek honor for himself, he sought honor for his Father. Jesus went to the cross so that “they would know that You sent me.” So why do I honor Jesus so much, as well? He valued my need for relationship with the Father, more than his own life. He didn’t take into account that I literally hated him and cursed him. That I hurt his people every day. And that I was inherently a rebel. He saw my need for Him and the Father and the Holy Spirit; and He willingly gave up His own life to meet that need. And He rose to give me His life. And I am now adopted; I am his child; and I am free to love.

Jesus wasn’t seeking honor, He was loving.

And I love and honor Him for that.

What do you want? Do you really, really want?

Matthew 7:7, 9, 11, 12 (NASB95)

7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. . . .
9 “Or what man is there among you who, when his son asks for a loaf, will give him a stone? . . .
11 “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him! . . .
12 “In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets.

I have always wondered what this passage meant. Is this scripture promising me anything I want if I just ask? Or, more spiritual, promising me anything I ask that is God’s will? Why does God say that what he gives is the best (even if I don’t recognize it as such?). And, what does the Golden Rule have to do with me getting what I want? Do I earn what I want by being kind to others?

One way to sum up the Bible is: Love God, love people.
Can I use this to guide my interpretation?

In verse 12 Jesus says: Always, therefore, love other people (my summary). To me, “therefore” means that to accomplish the previous verses I need to love others. Does that mean I earn what I want by loving others?

Or, does it mean that what I really want (God’s best “loaf”) is to love others?

If I ask, seek, and knock to have God give me love to give to others – he will. When he gives me that love I may not recognize it as the best. But if I choose to treat others the way I want to be treated, God will love that person through me. And joy for – the other person, and me, and God – is the result.

I’m gonna let it shine . . .

14“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden;
15nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house.
16“Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.

Matthew 5:14–16 (NASB95)

Hide it under a bushel, No! I’m gonna let it shine . . .

Harry Dixon Loes

I don’t have a choice of shining my light or not. I’m on a hill, I can’t be hidden. I don’t have a choice to be under a basket, God put me on a lampstand. The only choice I have is the “way” I let my light shine, do people see my good works and know their Father in Heaven is Good and Loves Them?

This is very sobering.

I fail daily. And Jesus forgave all my sins past, present and future when He died for me (and yours as well). But how much forgiveness is in others’ reserves? And do I grant to others the mercy that I want, and desperately need, from them?

And Jesus’ light is more than forgiveness. He gave my dead spirit Life! so I can love like He does. The only question is . . .

Will I?

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