Recently, I listened to a leader from Texas called Jimmy Sibert speak on the topic, “Journey to honor”. Speaking on Mother’s day, Jimmy’s purpose was to help his audience learn how to honor not only their parents–starting with their mothers–but also everyone in their lives they wanted to honor. He told the story of how his mother made numerous sacrifices to help him and his siblings become they types of people they have grown to become.
For example, his mother worked hard to pay for college for him and his siblings so that they graduated college without student loans. She didn’t do so because she had a lot of money to spare. She did so even though her own parents weren’t able to do the same for her. In fact, Jimmy told the story of how his mother became very disappointed when she was pulled out of a highly anticipated performance she’d worked hard for years to prepare for because her mother couldn’t afford to keep her promise to pay her tuition. She ended up dropping out of school and vowed to do it differently for her own children. In addition to that, she was a very strong disciplinarian. This means that Jimmy and his siblings –for fear of their mom–stayed out of trouble while their friends in the same community were committing crimes, going to jail, and ruining their futures. She was also very generous and loved to help the disenfranchised and the weak, a lesson which Jimmy picked up from her. However, along the way, her mother wasn’t perfect and Jimmy held bitterness against her for some of her weaknesses. Because of that, he couldn’t honor his mother as he should.
“Honor : To put value upon with words, deeds, and actions” Jimmy Seibert
Here are four things Jimmy advises us to do to honor people as we should.
- Forgive: The journey to honor starts with forgiveness. Until you forgive the weaknesses of others, you will be blinded to the amazing good things that they are doing for which we need to be thankful for and honor them. Jimmy’s mother made numerous sacrifices to take care of them and was a great mother. Yet, because of a few things Jimmy thought she had done wrong, he just couldn’t see those things until he forgave her from the heart.
- Remove judgment: The next thing on the journey of forgiveness is to let go of our previous judgments.
- See the good: When we forgive others and let go of judgments, we see the good they bring to our lives.
- Be thankful: The journey of honor ends with thankfulness. After doing the above three things, make the choice to be grateful and say thanks.
Whether it’s your mother, father, sibling, teacher, boss, friend or any other relationship, I encourage you to make the decision today to start the journey to honor. The beautiful thing about the title, “Journey to honor” is that honor is a journey. It’s something we will never be perfect. But we can decide to start honoring those in our lives today. And we can choose to continue to grow and press on to become better at honoring people. All humans have value. Honor them!