Each week for this season our devotions will be centered around the practice of PRAYER. Like the disciples we too have the opportunity to ask Jesus, “Lord, teach us to pray.” We encourage you to read all prayers and Psalms out loud – let the words of Scripture fill your prayers!
Devotional Thought // Pastor Isaac
In Romans 12:10b, Paul says:
>…”outdo each other in showing honor.”
The competition is on: try to honor better than the person next to you!
Definition of honor:
>regard with great respect.
To honor someone is to defer to their dignity. It is a humble posture towards another. In the Christian sense, it is to live proleptically. A proleptic phrase is something that we utter in the present tense that communicates a future reality. For example, on the way somewhere as a family, I often say to my kids: “I am in the car!” while I am on my way to the car. I want my children to behave in the present based upon the certain future—I will be in the car.
To live proleptically among one another is to live in the present knowing that the future is sure. We honor someone for who they will become in Christ, not just for who they are right now. Because Jesus will complete the good work in all of us (in his time), we live towards others in a way that honors transformation that has not yet occurred.
Jesus modeled this for us:
1. He honored his disciples when they did not believe correctly about him.
2. He honored their dignity when they made the worst sort of mistakes: betrayal, arrogance.
Paul advocates for this.
23 and those members of the body that we think less honorable we clothe with greater honor, and our less respectable members are treated with greater respect; 24 whereas our more respectable members do not need this. But God has so arranged the body, giving the greater honor to the inferior member,1 Corinthians 12:23–24 (NRSV)
Peter commands honor in broad terms:
Conduct yourselves honorably among the Gentiles, so that, though they malign you as evildoers, they may see your honorable deeds and glorify God when he comes to judge.1 Peter 2:12 (NRSV)
Honor everyone. Love the family of believers. Fear God. Honor the emperor.1 Peter 2:17 (NRSV)
We honor God and the act of honoring God-deferring to Him informs our posture towards others—we do not worship others, but we defer, respect and esteem them above ourselves.
Much about the Jesus way, the Christian way flies in the face of our primary self-protective way. Honoring others means that we must be like Jesus who:
5 Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, 7 but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, 8 he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death— even death on a cross.Philippians 2:5–8 (NRSV)
On your mark. Get set. Go.
1 Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations.
2 Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.
3 You turn us back to dust, and say, “Turn back, you mortals.”
4 For a thousand years in your sight are like yesterday when it is past, or like a watch in the night.
5 You sweep them away; they are like a dream, like grass that is renewed in the morning;
6 in the morning it flourishes and is renewed; in the evening it fades and withers.
7 For we are consumed by your anger; by your wrath we are overwhelmed.
8 You have set our iniquities before you, our secret sins in the light of your countenance.
9 For all our days pass away under your wrath; our years come to an end like a sigh.
10 The days of our life are seventy years, or perhaps eighty, if we are strong; even then their span is only toil and trouble; they are soon gone, and we fly away.
11 Who considers the power of your anger? Your wrath is as great as the fear that is due you.
12 So teach us to count our days that we may gain a wise heart.
13 Turn, O LORD! How long? Have compassion on your servants!
14 Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, so that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.
15 Make us glad as many days as you have afflicted us, and as many years as we have seen evil.
16 Let your work be manifest to your servants, and your glorious power to their children.
17 Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us, and prosper for us the work of our hands— O prosper the work of our hands!
Father, Son and Holy Spirit, develop in me a heart that desires to honor others before I seek honor for myself. Help me to see others in the light of their completed work and not my own judgement. Teach me the way of honor that was revealed through your cross. Amen