I always desire and do my best to honour friends and senior ministers who visit my office; I hate to see them go empty handed. I would give them as little as a bottle of drink or water. Sometimes, I would package a financial seed. There are times I would send an airtime, just to honour the grace they carry.

So recently, my wife dropped by in the office to say “Hello” while on an official assignment from her work place. After the usual gists and plays, I reached out to a drink and gave it to her to take along; we were both fasting that day. After she left, I thought to myself, “we still saw at home this morning, and I’m sure she would end up bringing the drink home.” But I chose to honour her rather than get familiar.

Friend, how often do we overlook people that are closest to us in this business of honour and respect? A man can care for and greet other ladies out there well while treating his wife with disdain. A Church member can “empty” his bank account for a visiting man of God or some random “prophets” while overlooking the prophet he has in his pastor (Hebrews 13:7, 17).

Are you the type that can lay flat, prostrating to greet an older man outside while you would look away from your parents without greeting them (Ephesians 6:1-3)? I once told our Church members; “stop saying ‘Sir, Sir’ for me, running errands, kneeling down etc., if you cannot do so for your husbands or parents at home.” Why do we overlook those closest to us and give our priceless stuff to “outsiders”?

Why do we allow familiarity to make us dishonour those to whom we should give the highest honour (1 Timothy 5:17)? Believe it or not, most times, the people who are closest to you contribute more to your life than those you meet occasionally. Why “over celebrate” a man of God who has only blessed you with few of his teachings and who you have not even met, and look down on your pastor who ministers to you daily and cares for you deeply (Jeremiah 3:15)?

Honour and respect must begin from home. In fact, if it does not work at home, you have no right to export it. The true test of maturity and loyalty is to have known someone so long or closely and still be able to honour and respect that person. Elisha honoured and respected Elijah while the sons of the prophets chose to be familiar (2 Kings 2:3). James and Jude were half brothers of Jesus, but they partook of His grace because of this wisdom of honour (James 1:1, Jude 1:1).

The Shunammite woman did not take the constant passing by of Elijah for granted. To her, this man is not a nuisance, he is a blessing and he deserved to be honoured (2 Kings 4:8-11). How do you see your spouse, parents, pastor etc.? A nuisance or a blessing? Listen, when the chips are down, it is your closest relationship that would be there for you; your spouse, pastor, parents, neighbors, friends etc. Why not treat them well?

© ‘Demola Awoyele
Lead Pastor,
Destiny Impact Church
Akure, Nigeria