1 Peter 2:17a (NIRV) : “Show proper respect to everyone.”
Respect is a VERY hard word for us to learn to enact in our lives. It is easy for us to look back on our lives and think of that word as applying to us as children and teenagers, but is so much harder to think about as an adult.
“Respect is showing others they are important by what you say and do.” In our culture we are used to putting ourselves first in our thoughts, words and actions. I believe those are some of the reasons why it has become so hard for us to respect or show respect for others.
Philippians 2:3 says, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” AKA Respect others. Notice that the writer does not say only respect those who respect you but rather keeps it general. We are to respect all others and to view them higher than ourselves.
Respect starts with us. It begins with how we view others and that translates to our words and actions. You might not like that person, what they believe or what they say but we are to respect them nonetheless. As we show others we respect, often our attitudes and their attitude toward us changes for the better.
Most importantly when we respect those others and respect those in authority over us we are showing respect to God. For it was God who has placed them into our lives. We show respect to God by respecting others.
How does your view of respect affect your words and actions?