Correcting the abuse of honour

First of all, what I am about to type is not doctrine just some thoughts.

I have watched self proclaimed apostles beat honour teachings into their congregations my whole life. I have seen their prophet friends prophecy money and honour coming their way. I have even watched pastors offer the world in exchange for honour and admiration. It comes with fancy teachings that sound really good at first, but then when you go over your notes you realize that they didn’t say anything. At the end of the day all it makes me want to do is be sarcastic and skeptical of people that need to be honoured and respected.

Hebrews 13:17 (amongst many other verses) talks about honouring our leaders and how not honouring your leaders actually creates problems for yourself as a follower. I get this concept, and I suppose at the end of the day if I am following a leader / boss / Culligan man… or who ever that I can’t respect and honour on my own, then I should not follow. But in Hebrews 13, back up with me to verse 7-8. “Appreciate your pastoral leaders who gave you the Word of God. Take a good look at the way they live, and let their faithfulness instruct you, as well as their truthfulness. There should be a consistency that runs through us all. For Jesus doesn’t change—yesterday, today, tomorrow, he’s always totally himself.”

I am coming to the conclusion more and more as I watch men and women of God in their ministries that if I want to replicate what they are doing in life then that is worth honouring. Here are two examples from my life (no names, you can do the math if your smart)

1. A guy who is a senior pastor of a church, my wife and I have know this pastor for several years. He used to be a really friendly guy, always willing to give some advice and stop and chat when we were in the same city. I really respected his opinions and insight. Over the past few years he has been getting bigger speaking gigs and gaining some notoriety that he has worked hard for. But with the elevated profile he started becoming to big for people who don’t matter to his career, too busy to even be polite. He even teaches an interesting view of honour, in the form of “don’t argue with the man of God”. I have watched this for a few years and the sad fact is… I am still learning from his insight. I am learning how I never want to behave in my ministry career. I never want to be too busy to have simple conversations, I never want to be too busy to pray with someone. I never want to speak as though I have all the answers.

2. Another senior pastor who has served in only 3 congregations in his long ministry career. He has been willing to stay in positions and fight for his staff, fight for his congregation even when it does not seem popular. He is a pastor who models scriptural living, not by using catch phrases while he is preaching, but by staying the course and honouring those who work under him and even taking time for truly annoying people. (Don’t pretend to be holy… we all know them) He has never asked for honour, just modelled it. He never asked for respect, he just respected others. He never asked for people to follow him, he just followed Jesus.

I am coming to a place where I am not interested in following super flashy leaders who don’t last the course of time. I don’t care about new revelations that are really nice if you only look at one scripture. I want to follow leaders who are proving that they have the faith to stick it out, who have the character to sustain their marriage and ministry and who above all honour people that don’t deserve honour. That to me is the type of person that deserves honour.

To me it’s similar to my opinion of movies. If you tell me how awesome a movie is and it has huge hype… I probably won’t go see it. I will wait until its not popular to see if people still like it. I value my time more than that. I also really value my honour that I give, I want to honour leaders worth honouring.

Just some thoughts.



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