TCM Devotions: The Humble King

“Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:5-10

I think there are two ways to look at respect, one from society’s point of view and one from the Bible’s point of view.

Society holds respect as something that is earned and deemed worthy upon a specific individual due to his particular efforts or accomplishments. However, why does it seem so unnatural for us to be able to respect just anybody from the initial get-go? The answer, I believe, is rooted in our innate nature of pride. Pride prevents us from having an unbiased perspective and leads us to subconsciously place ourselves above others. Quite simply, the very essence of pride takes satisfaction in oneself.

In contrast, the Bible portrays respect as a byproduct of humility. From the very beginning, Jesus sets the standard through his incarnation making “himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men”. The King of kings and the Lord of lords humbled himself and was “obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross”. (Contextually, crucifixion upon a cross was regarded as the worst punishment reserved for the worst of criminals. Not only that, but also Galatians 3:13 reads, “… Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree…”).

Paul writes to the church of Philippi to regard others in humility, more significant than themselves. In other words, it is only through humility that we can learn to truly respect one another by placing others before ourselves. And as disciples, we are to follow in the footsteps of Jesus Christ, the humble king.

In what areas of your life does pride overshadow humility? How can I be more like our humble King this week?

TCM Devotions: Reverence


“But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.” 1 Peter 3: 15


In 1 Peter 3, teaches us to treat one another with regards to respect, humility, love, forgiveness and compassion. Most of it focuses on how we should treat ourselves, those we love around us, those that persecute us, and of course how we treat Jesus. A lot of it focuses on “us” but in verse 15, it points out the important fact that respect (reverence) for Christ the Lord is important. More often than not, we may find ourselves focused on other things other than God during our daily lives. This is an important reminder that we must remember in our hearts that He comes first. Without Him and respect for Him, everything else is irrelevant. It also says to be gentle and respectful as we give reason for the hope that we have in Christ so that those who persecute and harm us would realize their faults. The only way to show them, is to be gentle and respectful which can be quite challenging at times.


How can you show respect (reverence) for Christ today?

TCM Devotions: R-E-S-P-E-C-T is Not Just a Great Song

“But we beseech you, brethren, to respect those who labour among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves.” I Thessalonians 5:12-13

R-E-S-P-E-C-T is not just a great Aretha Franklin song from the 1960’s. I have yet to come across a person who did not desire to be respected. Every husband, wife, friend, or acquaintance attentively searches for others who are eager to respect not only them but also their time. Respect involves showing more concern for people than agendas, thinking highly of others, building them up in love, and treating others with fairness and integrity.

An integral part of showing respect is simply listening. We offer our presence and open our ears, listening to the hidden hurts and heartaches, the deepest dreams and desires of those we come across. Our God listens to our prayers; Jesus listened to those around him; and as such we too are commanded to listen to our brothers and sisters in Christ. An important part of listening with respect means that we do not rush to fix things or offer solutions. Rather we are directed to respect folks enough to let them share their full story. Sometimes all another person needs is for someone to hear what’s on their heart, just as we desire for others to listen to us.

Further, respect means we trust others, that they will confidently do a great job without needing our help, and in their own way. Although difficult, we are called to respect the way God has shaped and moulded those around us, with the acknowledgment that they may do things differently.

Finally we also demonstrate respect by doing what we can to protect the reputation and dignity of our brothers and sisters in Christ. Instead of listening to malicious gossip about others, or contributing to the spread of rumours, we allow our Christian love for others overcome any relational impediments. “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” (1 Peter 4:8).

1) What does it mean to really respect someone?
2) What would cause you to lose respect for someone?
3) How important is it for you to be respected? Why?

TCM Devotions: What Does the Bible Say About Self-respect?

Verse: Romans 12:3
“For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of grace.”

Brennan Manning writes a brilliant commentary on what it means to accept oneself as a beloved child of God in his book, Ragamuffin Gospel. In it, he writes, “Genuine self-acceptance is not derived from the power of positive thinking, mind games or pop psychology. IT IS AN ACT OF FAITH in the God of grace.” Our self-respect is not about how we see ourselves…. It’s about our acceptance of how God sees us. Amen!

What does an act of faith in the God of grace look like to you and in your life?