An Honor Culture

A culture of honor is not a culture filled with people who insist on being honored, but one filled with people who insist on being honorable.

The former would simply be a culture of entitlement dressed up in the clothing and language of honor. At best, this would be an expression of immaturity and insecurity. At worst, a thinly veiled form of control and manipulation: “You should honor me by doing what I say/want!” This will lead to major dysfunction because it is essentially a demand for leaders to surrender their leadership.

So, while a desire to be honored is not in itself a bad thing, it will become one if it becomes a driving motivation. This becomes clear when we consider the example of Jesus, who came to serve not to be served, who honored everyone while being routinely dishonored.

Over the long haul, we will be honored if we have lived an honorable life, but to insist on being honored along the journey is a dangerous detour that will lead us away from the path of life. This is true because so often our Father calls us to forego the honor of man in favor of being honored by Him alone.

In the final analysis, Jesus continued to do the Father’s will despite being treated as a “prophet without honor”, while the Pharisees loved and lived for the honor of man. We can choose to follow the path of the Pharisees or follow the Way, the Truth and the Life, but let’s not deceive ourselves that we are following Jesus while demanding honor for ourselves…

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