Today on Encouragement for Today, I wrote about a time (not too long ago) when I blew it with one of my children.
One frustration after another piled on top of me. Being late piled on to a broken rear view mirror, piled on to rush hour traffic, piled on to a frustrated teenager, and all kinds of yuck poured out of me.
My reaction wasn’t honoring to God, nor was it honoring to my son.
In that moment, I valued myself (my emotions, my circumstances, my to-do list) above my son (and his emotions, circumstances and to-do list).
God convicted me quickly of my attitude, and I’m so glad He did because I was able to choose humility (even though my flesh wanted to defend my right to snap). With God’s help, I set the relationship with my son above my need to be right.
As I’ve thought more about this issue of justifying myself, God brought another scripture to mind:
Philippians 2:3-4, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”
Oh how hard this is for me. Especially when it comes to wanting the last word.
Which I want.
But most of the time, my desire for the last word … my desire to speak my mind … my desire to be understood … doesn’t come from a pure heart.
Sadly, there’s usually some selfish ambition or pride trying to sneak its way in through a crack. Pride is a weakness of mine, and so Philippians 2:3-4 is a key verse for me to remember.
When I value and honor others above myself, those cracks get smaller.
This idea to value and honor others above ourselves is opposite of what world tells us to do. The world tells us honor people because of who they are or what they do – in comparison with us. With this mindset, people must earn honor and respect.
However, God tells us to honor people because of who we are.
Honoring each other is a choice we make. And I’ve found that it has to flow from a place of humility.
It’s not easy being a follower of Jesus. I’m just telling it like it is. Some days it feels like I’m always the one who has to rein it in, have self-control and make loving choices.
But here’s the good news. The peace God has given me when I set aside my rights is a gift – pure and simple.
Here’s something to remember today when your boss snaps at you, your husband is late or your child calls you on the freeway annoyed:
It’s a blessing to show honor to others … not because they deserve it, but because you deserve peace.
Thanks for joining me today.