In our last post, I shared that the foundation of showing honour to someone else is attitude. I also shared that unless we can show honour to someone we can never succeed in life. There are five main ways to show honour, that I use the mnemonic ALARM to remember. The first we know is attitude, the other four are Listen, Alter, Recognize and Money. ALARM!
So today we will look at how to honour someone by listening to them. In the book of Proverbs, Solomon tells his son to “attend to His Word” (Proverbs 4.20). You honour someone by attending to their words, by listening to them.
If you do not listen to someone, you do not honour them. I cannot make that any clearer or direct. Children, if you do not listen to your parents you do not honour them!
Paying attention to the words of your fathers in the faith is really important. Your attitude to someone’s words reveals how much you honour them. If you have a poor attitude to Jesus’s words you will have no honour for Him! If you have a positive attitude to His words, if you love listening to Him, you honour Him.
When I am preaching, those with their notepads and pens are the ones showing honour. Those who are playing Candy Crush on their phones – not so much! Paying attention to someone’s words and wisdom is proof that you honour them. Who you listen to is the way of finding out who you honour!
Remember in the last post, we discovered Jesus could do no miracles in Nazareth because of the lack of honour. Well, in the inverse of that, Jesus’ first miracle was done in an atmosphere of honour. Jesus’ mother said to the servants “Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it”, and Jesus told them to fill up bathtubs with water and serve it as wine, and they obeyed a strange, almost foolish, instruction, and in that atmosphere there was a miracle (John 2). Jesus’ mother summed up honour very well: listen to Him! Listen to what He says! And then do the instructions!
Listening carefully to someone’s instructions is a sign of honour. Many people will obey the instructions they like and ignore the others. That’s not honour, and will never lead to miracles. I have learned I cannot work miracles in a place where Jesus is not honoured and where I am not honoured. And the first sign of that is not listening to instructions!
Imagine if those people at the wedding refused to fill up bathtubs with water and serve it as wine. Imagine if they thought “that’s such a stupid idea, that’s not any sense at all, I think those instructions are dumb”. They would have dishonoured Jesus and missed out on a great miracle. One of the greatest signs of honour is to listen.
Every year I go to Andrew Wommack’s pastors’ conference, twice. I go the UK one and the US one. And I go for one reason. Not to meet others, not to be seen, not to this or that, but to listen to Andrew. I honour him and I honour the influence he has been in my life. How do I listen carefully:
- I bring a notepad, and take notes. Recording what someone says is vital
- I ensure there are no distractions
- I make sure I get a good night’s sleep
- I go over the notes and work out how to apply them to my life
I actively and deliberately listen. And it has never ever failed to benefit my life ever. One of the greatest points of honour is paying attention and listening. Let me give you a secret, pastors, I have never once been stabbed in the back by someone who takes notes when I preach. Listening leads to honour which leads to loyalty. Selah.