A Culture Rich in Honor

honor_fullA culture rich in honor considers others better than themselves. Recently I was in Tallahassee coaching the emerging leaders on How to Create a Personal Life Plan. God has placed so much treasures in these men’s lives and such great callings that if we help each one fulfill their purpose they will in return help many others fulfill their purpose. The end result – a rippling effect of sons who are fitted with their sandals ready to go to work in God’s harvest.  At the end of our session we had a time of ministry anointing the feet of each emerging leader and praying for them that they would live their purpose and walk out their destinies. It doesn’t matter where you have been or where the other person have been, we honor those we serve above ourselves. Honor is defined as “to esteem, to admire, to look up to, to defer.”

Humility-is-the-Christian-27s-greatest-honor-3B-tattoo

Jesus addresses a culture of honor in the story of the Pharisee and the tax collector in Luke 18. They both went to the temple to pray; the Pharisee practiced religion thanking God he didn’t have all the sins the tax collector had while the tax collector was beating his breast “God, be merciful to me, the sinner!” The Pharisee probably with his nose turned up was saying “thank God I’m not like him!,” while the tax collector humbly bowed his knees and prayed “Lord, have mercy on me!” As the body of Christ we are not self-focused or internally focused, we consider the higher call and greater good of others.  When we esteem, admire, look up to others as more honorable than ourselves it keeps us humble. “A striking thing about actual honor cultures is people will regard as honorable what they honor, and dishonorable what they despise, irrespective of what moral and political leaders tell them they ought to honor or despise” (James Bowman). We all want to be honored, yet the paradox is, when we are humble and honor others, then we are exalted. In the kingdom of God a culture of honor is permeated through humble souls, devoted to one another in love.

Who can you intentionally honor this week?

What are some things you can do to show this person you prefer them above yourself?

You can develop a healthy, robust community that lives right with God and enjoy its results only if you do the hard work of getting along with each other, treating each other with dignity and honor.~ James 3:18 (TM)

“Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor.” ~ Rom 12:10 (NASB)

 

 

Yoked up with Jesus

While doing my devotions this morning the Lord reminded me of this well known scripture in John 15:4-5 “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.” (NASB). Another version says “I am the Vine, you are the branches. When you’re joined with me and I with you, the relation intimate and organic, the harvest is sure to be abundant. Separated, you can’t produce a thing.” (TM). Years ago I read a little book by Bruce Wilkinson Secrets of the Vine. The entire book speaks to what happens when we remain connected and yoked-up with Christ.

Abiding goes deeper than a superficial “hi” or “hello, nice to see you” relationship. It speaks to remaining, dwelling – to continue in lasting relationship with someone. When we are joined in intimate, organic relationship with Christ we grow and bear much, more fruit. Practicing God’s presence (consistently connecting with Him in the holy place) is essential for us as spiritual coaches. When we are joined with Christ, He gives us spiritual intelligence and insights to care for the students and emerging leaders as He would. Apart from this, we will not produce sons and daughters who remain.

Recall our acronym responsibility:

Recruitdownload
Equip and Train
Spirit-filled
P
raying
O
ptimistic
N
ext-Generation Leaders
who lead Self well
I
nfluence others
B
uy into our vision
I
nvest time and resources
L
ove the Lost
I
nspire others to action
T
reat others with dignity

And are Yoked-up with a mentor/coach

Our desire is to raise up the next generation of leaders who are yoked up with Christ and are responsible to the call on their lives. In closing I want us to reflect on 3 questions:

  1. How can I improve the quality of my relationship with the Lord?
  2. What situation(s) am I facing that requires spiritual intelligence that only God can help with?
  3. How can I model being yoked-up with Christ to my ESL’s?

RESPONSIBILITY – Invest in others

Let’s recap, so far our acronym “Responsibility6225794911_36db2f373f_z
Recruit
Equip and Train
Spirit-filled
Praying
Optimistic
Next Generation Leaders
who lead Self well
Influence others
Buy into our vision
Invest time and resources

Invest is a peculiar concept because oftentimes we say we believe in something or someone but if we are not invested in that thing or person, it’s difficult to really measure the extent of our belief or the value we place on them. An investment is sowing – planting that which was not there before. J. Thorp says “leaders attract followers who are committed to achieving desired outcomes of an organization and therefore willing to invest themselves into the purpose” hall@wpc.net. In the same way when we invest in our emerging leaders, we plant seeds of our organization’s mission, values, vision, strategies through our time, counsel, coaching, training and finances to motivate them to achieve the desired outcomes of both the organization and the emerging leader.  John Maxwell on a Minute with Maxwell shared “when you sow, you don’t reap immediately and you don’t dig up the seed that you plant to look to see if it’s growing, you have to be patient.” Firstly you sow a seed then water it, nurture it, expose it to the natural environs and let it grow organically.

As the ELP Rep, I challenge you to invest (devout) your time, talents and resources in the emerging leaders to accomplish their calling and the organization’s purpose. In so doing we can create a culture which seeks to stimulate the growth and development of others, our organization, and ourselves. The greatest measure of our success is the seeds we sow through quality time and resources which we spend in building relationships rather than the harvest we will reap. As the father of servant leadership (Robert Greenleaf) asked “Do those served grow as persons? Do they, while being served, become healthier, wiser, freer, more autonomous, more likely themselves to become servants?”

“We don’t accomplish anything in this world alone…and whatever happens is the result of the whole tapestry of one’s life and all the weavings of individual threads from one to another that creates something.”

~ Sandra Day O’Connor

Blessings, Andree

ELP Training coach