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People are a gift from God, so right now in this room there could be someone who's a gift from God for you and you wouldn't even know it, but there is a way you can unlock it. Whatever you disrespect will move away from you, whatever you respect will attract towards you. We can become offended when people don't meet our expectations, and start to dishonour and disrespect them. Prejudice can stop you receiving people, pride is a terrible thing, causes us to judge, find fault, see the worst, and build a wall that stops you receiving. Discerning? No, you just didn't have enough love to celebrate them and receive them.
I want to share with you something that will just be a blessing for you. I want to share with you a couple of principles that can unlock the gift that is in the lives of other people. How many of you know you need other people in your life? You may not think so but you do need other people. In fact, actually God's designed it so we can't succeed in life without other people. I know you'd like to go it alone and it's just me and God, but people who become lone rangers like that become very weird strangers indeed, so life is not made for just living alone with God, just me and God. We actually need people.
In fact God sends people into your life. How many know that God brings people into your life that are the answer to what you need, or they have the answer to what you need? So once we get to accept that, and face that, here's the thing - if I believe that God brings people into my life to help me get where He wants me to get, well who are they, and how can I unlock it? The problem is, they don't sort of come along and say: well God has sent me to you to change your life, and help you succeed. How many have had anyone come up to you and say that? It just doesn't happen does it? So what happens instead is, we have a whole lot of weird and wonderful people coming in and out of our life, and the question is: which one came from God, and which one can help us?
So since you don't really know, the temptation is for us to miss the opportunities to unlock for our lives what God has for us. I learnt, I was in a church in Dannevirke, and God showed me the key a long, long time ago. Very, very simple, and I want to share with you two things tonight. They're things you can do, and if you would just see them as principles of the kingdom that work, and that they're right through the Bible. They're things you can immediately start to practice in your life, and it will start to impact your own life. It'll start to unlock what people have to give. It's interesting, it said: counsel lies deep in the heart of a man, but a man of understanding will draw it out. So you can have someone next to you, who may have exactly the wisdom you need to solve the problem you're facing, but unless you know how to draw it out, you'll miss it.
I have seen over the years, many people miss things. One of the things, when I went into the church that I ended up pastoring, I remember going in there, and God teaching me this principle very quickly. I was in a group that the Pastor worked with, but out of all the people in the group, I was the one that received the most from him. I got more than anyone else, and it's not that he had more time with me. It's not that he put a lot of time into me at all, but it was because of how I positioned myself in relationship to him, and I want to share with you those two keys. They're very simple, and they're found in scripture, and they're principles that Jesus taught, and then I want you to begin to think about how you could apply it into your own life.
It works in marriages. It works in families, it works in a business, it works in school, it works everywhere in life. These are principles of the kingdom. It's how life works, so here's the thing. People are a gift from God, so right now in this room, there could be someone who's a gift from God for you, and you wouldn't even know it, but there is a way you can unlock it. I love what Brian was sharing; he made a lifestyle choice of generosity, and so the things I will share with you, they need to become lifestyle choices, that you'll actually operate your life according to these principles; and as you do, you'll find things will shift around your life. If you violate these principles, you will find many things that God intended for you will not actually happen, because you've literally frustrated it. I know that's hard to understand, but let me just show you.
We'll go to Mark, Chapter 6, and I want to give you the first principle. It's the principle of honour or respect. Whatever you disrespect, will move away from you. Whatever you respect, will attract towards you. To respect something means: to look at it, with a view of placing value on something. The word honour means to place value, so whatever you place value on will come near to you, whatever you devalue will move away from you. If you devalue a relationship, it will diminish; value a relationship and it will grow. So whatever you value or respect will come near to you, whatever you disrespect will draw away from you. Now you've got to get that. See the thing is, it's such a simple principle, but it actually works everywhere in life, and many marriages fail because of just that simple thing of dishonour and disrespect.
I know many Christians who have missed out on what God could have given them. Very simply, they just didn't respect and honour the people God brought into their life to help them. They actually rejected or despised the counsel that was given. Let's see the principle in operation, just so you can see it absolutely vividly in Mark, Chapter 6. Jesus went from there, and came to His own country, and His disciples followed Him. And when the Sabbath had come He began to teach in the synagogue, and many hearing Him were astonished, saying: where did this Man get these things? And what wisdom is this which is given to Him, that such mighty works are performed by His hands! So notice what people are saying? They are amazed at the tremendous wisdom He has, as He teaches in the synagogue, and they have heard of the miracles He's done, and they are stunned by all the miracles Jesus has done; blind eyes opened, deaf ears open, the lame walked, people raised from the dead. They have heard of the miracles, and now they see Him teaching in their synagogue, and they are astonished.
Now, so they go from being astonished to this. It says: now isn't this just the carpenter? Isn't this just a carpenter, an ordinary carpenter? Aren't His family here, you know, the son of Mary, brother of James and Joses, and Judas and Simon? And aren't His sisters here as well? And they were offended at Him. It says - notice this - it says, Jesus said to them: a prophet is not without honour except in his own country, among his own relatives, and in his own house. Then He said: He could do no mighty work there. Now He could no mighty work there. He laid His hands on a few sick people who did receive Him, and respond, and honoured Him; He healed them, and He marvelled at their unbelief. Now here's the thing, the statement, an amazement statement: Jesus Himself could do no mighty work there.
Now I want you to see that in that town there were many sick people. There were many people with financial problems, there were many people in distress, there were many people who were demonised and tormented, many people. Now God's answer has just walked into the city. See, Jesus was the answer that God had for the needs they had, the need for healing, the need for deliverance, every need that they had, He had the answer for them, and the heart of God was to help the people, and the heart of Jesus was to help the people. This was His home town. He knew the people there, He knew the people that suffered from blindness, and deafness, and torments, and were demonised. He wanted to help them, so get this; He's anointed with all the power to help them. In His heart, He wants to help them. It's the will of God to help them, God has sent Him into that town - yet He could do no mighty work.
What that tells us, that even if Jesus Himself stood here in the room, physically in front of you, unless you meet the conditions required, you'll receive nothing. Now this is astonishing. What you've got to realise, it goes past that. Any person that God sends into your life, to help you in your journey to get where you need to get to, unless you respond to them properly, they cannot do any mighty work for you. Think about that. Think about over your life, all the people that God may have tried to send into your life to assist you, help you, grow you, shape you, influence you, challenge you, confront you, whatever; and because you didn't respond properly, God's work, or that mighty work through that person, was stopped. So that means that how you respond to a person can make the difference between whether what God has given them for you is released, or whether it is retained, or hindered, or locked up. Now that's extraordinary.
See, God brings people into our life, and connects us with people, to help us to get where He wants us to get. He has got a destiny for you. He's got a journey for you to take. There are issues for you to face. There is a personal growth journey you have to take, and for you to do that, God brings into your life the people that can help you get there. Now you may think: well I don't see that. I don't see it at all. Well get this, that if you don't respond rightly to people, then you shut down the ability of God to work in your life. Isn't that extraordinary! Now we would love to come into a meeting, and lift our hands and pray, and sing some songs, and ask God to do all kinds of wonderful things; but God sometimes sends people into your life to help you, and how you respond to the people He sends determines whether there is a release of God's gift. Remember, God's gift is always a person. We tend to think of the gifts of the spirit, but what we forget is, actually we tend to think of gifts. Actually what you get is the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit reveals Himself in various ways. We call those giftings, but actually the gift is the person.
You think about the answers, well people need healing. No, actually God gives the gift of Jesus the healer. People need peace, God gives Jesus the prince of peace. When you have Him, peace comes. When you have Him, healing comes. When you have Him, deliverance comes; but the whole thing is receiving Him, and so He could do no mighty work. Now why was that? Very simply, they dishonoured and disrespected Him. It's as simple as that - dishonour and disrespect shuts down the flow of the gift of God into your life from another person. In fact, this is so important a principle, that God says there are two people - the first one is your father and your mother, your father and your mother - God says: if you will honour them and respect them, then you will live long, and life will go well for you. In other words, what it's saying, if you learn to treat the first representatives of God in your life with honour and respect, then it guarantees you will release into your life wisdom from God, to help you grow in your character, and prepare you for life.
You think of why so many young people go off the rails. It's simply this; they actually disrespect a father, or disrespect a mother. They rebel, because they disrespect them. See, once you've disrespected and dishonoured someone, then it will create the excuse for you then to reject what they have to give into your life. So an example, I've seen in families young people, I've seen in a family with an unsaved father, he had wisdom that would have protected the child, but because they despised him because he wasn't a Christian, his wisdom was rejected, and the child got into trouble. I've seen it over and over and over again. Respect and honour will release for you what that person has gifted by God for you, and when it comes to authority in our life, or people God puts over us, this is one of the vital principles. So you think about this; you go everywhere, you hear people running down their boss, they're criticising their boss. What that means effectively is, that everything God intended to bring into their life through that boss is blocked, because of the attitude of disrespect.
Where did you learn that? Well you learnt that disrespect for authorities in the realm of home and family with parents, so God says specifically: there's a promise with respecting and honouring, and placing value on your parents, and their opinions, and their counsel, and their advice. When you do that, there is a blessing will follow through your life, and it'll affect your choice of marriage, it will affect your relationship with God, it will affect your relationship with your teachers, it will affect your relationship with your boss, in fact it is going to affect every major authority relationship right through your life. It will either release protection and wisdom for you, or it will shut it down.
I was at a point in my life as a young Christian, and I just was inexperienced, and felt that something was a leading from God. I made a decision I was going to quit my job and go up to Whangarei, and going to go up to a ministry up there, and we were going to be involved with him, and blah blah blah. So I got the whole process even rolling, and then my Pastor came to talk to me. We had a talk, and I realised that I had disrespected his counsel in my life, and disrespected him by not at least sharing with him such a major decision - not that he would tell me what to do, but that actually, he would have a part in me making such a big decision. When I realised God spoke to me that I had done that, I became dismayed in my heart, and he challenged me whether I'd done the right thing, and pointed out one or two things. After he'd left I was just left in shock, and I was faced with a choice: will I respect what he has in his life, and receive it; or will I actually follow what I'd determined to do?
I went into some shock for a few days over that one, and I made a decision I would honour and respect the gift on his life. Now there were many reasons why I could have not respected him. You notice in the story with Jesus, there are two reasons that people disrespected Him. The first one was familiarity. Isn't this the carpenter's son? What would the carpenter know about God? I mean, what would a carpenter have to do? In other words, familiarity - they were so familiar with Him, He'd grown up in their area, in their town. They knew Him, and they become familiar with Him, and when you become familiar with a person, it's easy to lose sight of what God has in them to give to you, and through disrespect, familiarity breeds disrespect, and disrespect shuts down the gifts that God has in people for you. Ask yourself this: is there any person in my life that God has made as a gift to me, and I have disrespected them, because I've become familiar? I've taken them for granted? I've taken the person for granted, what they have to give me for granted, and I've treated it lightly. That's what it means is to place little value on it.
This certainly shuts down what they could give to you, so I made the decision at that time - you notice with Jesus it said: they were offended at Him, so the first thing is familiarity; the second thing is offences. We become offended when people don't meet our expectations. We become offended when things don't work out like we expect them to work out, and we can become offended with God very easily, when He doesn't answer things the way we want. We can become offended with God, we can start to dishonour God and disrespect God. Now here's the other thing the Bible tells us clearly" not only has He put a promise that honouring your parents things will go well for you, here's a second thing. He explains specifically, in two places in the Bible, that to access His presence you must come with honour and appreciation and gratitude, you know, enter His gates with thanksgiving, enter His courts with praise. Honour is the doorway into His presence; and dishonour, Romans 1:21, takes you out of His presence, and causes you to not see what He's trying to do in your life. This is a very, very important principle.
So I made the decision I would respect the Pastor's wisdom and counsel, and then I was left in a very, very terrible tight spot. I decided I would trust God, that if I listened to counsel and submitted to that counsel, then He would work it out. I won't give you all the details of it, that's for another time, but what happened was, I ended up with a promotion, and life started to go extremely well, in a new level of blessing in my work. It was because I just respected godly counsel, and respected the person, and their insight into my life, and to what was right for me. That's happened on more than one occasion, and I tell you, it took quite a humbling to do that. It was just a matter of saying: I respect what this person has to say, I place value and weight on it, and I place value and weight on him. Therefore I will receive it, and I will respond to it - and it saved me. Now just the end of it, without going too far, two years later that ministry that we would have gone and followed went totally off the rails, went into major deception. His marriage broke up, and the whole ministry, it was a disaster - whereas two years later I was set in position to start and pioneer a Christian school, and eventually within a year of that, become Pastor of the church.
Now it's a key principle. I can tell you this over and over and over again, so there it is. Very simply, Jesus was disrespected and dishonoured, because of familiarity and offence, so they recognised what He did other places, but they didn't realise He was God's answer to them. Now without me going into lots of examples of this, let me just give you just a couple of things to think about here. It is very easy to just dishonour and disrespect people that God brings around your life that could help you, because we just don't see them as God's answer, and it takes faith to see that every person God brings around you has something to give to your life. If you just think well, actually I don't really need people, and they're a bit of a nuisance, you miss that people are actually part of God's way of enriching our lives. I've found there's always something I can learn off any person. Here I have, been a Pastor for all these years, but I can learn something off the youngest Christian. I can learn something about God that I didn't know, just if I will respect that person, and honour them, and treat them as someone of value, and maybe God has got something in their life that I could draw from and learn. It's all in the attitude, so think about that - they didn't see He was God's answer.
Now here's a thing, men particularly need respect. Of all the needs, God's wired a man so men need respect; women need love. Women need to be pursued and loved, men need respect; so when men are disrespected, the gifts in their life shut down. So in marriage and family where there's disrespect, then what happens is, the gifting shuts down and men withdraw, shut down. Many marriages are in trouble, really simply for one reason, because of criticism and disrespect; whereas respect would have opened up and allowed the gift to be unlocked like a passage, honour unlocks the giftings that are in people's lives - a very simple principle this, not very hard. Let me give you a few examples in the Bible.
Here's one. One example is Miriam. Miriam was Moses' oldest sister. One day Miriam looked at Moses and thought well, he might be a mighty man of God, and think he's something else; but he's marrying that black woman, and I don't like the idea about that. That's not a very good idea at all - so she rose up, and she became critical of him. When she became critical of him, and dishonoured him and disrespected him, immediately God intervened, and she got hit with leprosy. Disrespect shut her down from receiving what God had, through her brother's ministry. He was the brother, and he was the younger brother at that. Think about David. David was God's answer to Israel. David was the youngest boy in the family, but when the prophet came to see who in the family was worthy of being anointed, and who was God's one to choose, the father and the brothers did not even think to include David. It never entered their minds that David could be great. Why? Because they looked down on him, and despised him, and disrespected him; but not one of them was the one that God chose. God's choice was the one they all despised. Think about it.
You see, if Samuel hadn't actually said: there's got to be another one, have you got another boy around here? And they finally dragged him out, then David would not have been anointed king; and he became God's answer to the nation. God's answer to the nation was in their home, and they didn't see it. Think about Joseph. His brothers were envious, and were jealous of him, and despised him, and dishonoured and disrespected him; but he was the answer to the famine that would come up, and would affect all of their lives later on. Respect and honour unlocks the gifts in people's lives, disrespect shuts it down, and they cannot bring to you what God has intended for you. When you think about how God deals with people, do you realise that God treats people with respect? Now that's a bit of a hard one to swallow, because we would tend to think that God knows everything.
God knows everything about us, so God knows all about you Ray, knows everything, so we see you nicely dressed and all the good things, but God sees everything. He sees everything. Now when we see everything about people that we don't like, do you know what we do? We then disrespect them. We see only the shortcomings and faults, and what happens is we start to despise and disrespect them, and we think there's no good thing can come from that person. Now see, I was quite stunned a couple of weeks ago - stunned is the right word - when Ray got up on the stage, and what he had in him all these years just flowed out with such life. It was extraordinary. I didn't know that was in there, but then someone found it. They received him and listened, gave him room to move, and valued what he had, and suddenly it all comes out. Now that's true of other people as well, and if you don't receive the person, if you don't actually honour and respect, you can't draw it out.
Now think about how God deals with people. I'll give you a couple of people as an example, then we'll just finish with the last key. It'll be easy, the last key's quite a simple one as well. Think about this, when God dealt with Abram. Abram lied about his wife, lied that she was his sister, allowed this other king to take the wife, because he was afraid. He was so looking out for himself, and yet God treated him with respect, and He said: they call you Abram. I'm going to call you Abraham. Gideon was a man who was full of fear, and he's hiding from the enemy, he's so fearful; and yet God says: mighty man of valour. We tend to look and see the weaknesses in people, and use it as a grounds to disrespect and dishonour them. It never is. When God looks at you, He sees all the faults, but He looks past it, and never disrespects you. He'll always treat you with a respect and honour. In fact He'll treat you with so much respect and honour, He'll let you choose your eternal destiny. He'll give you the right of choice. He'll never override your will, and therefore disrespect you. Because He treats us with honour and respect, we can respond, and what's in us gets unlocked. Amazing isn't it?
There's all kinds of examples. Think about Simon. Simon was an unstable kind of character. Jesus said: you're the rock, I'm going to build on you, and that man was obviously unstable. He was reckless, he did all kinds of weird stuff, and yet Jesus called him a rock. How about that - so you may have heard a lot of people say much about you, and none of it much good, but when God looks He says: oh, I see someone great in there! And God can bring it out of you, because He sees something great in you, and He honours you and respects you; and He's just waiting for you to respond.
Okay, here's the second key, very, very simple one, and we'll find it here in Matthew, Chapter 10, very simple key. Here it is, Verse 40; He who receives you, receives Me. He who receives Me, receives Him who sent Me. He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet, shall receive a prophet's reward. He who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man, shall receive a righteous man's reward. Okay, let's just pick it up there. Notice there He talks about the word receiving. Now to receive someone means to reach out and welcome them, and unconditionally accept them, embrace them in your life, to recognise in them there's something unique, and something possible that can bless you. You receive them. It tells of Jesus, He came to His own, and His own would not receive Him. They were offended by Him, so guess what? The Son of God would not be the Son of God to them. Until they receive Him, He cannot save them. Isn't that extraordinary? Until they receive Him - and there will come a time when Israel will receive Him, but they didn't receive Him. Think about this - if you receive the Holy Ghost, then you receive God's power to change your life, but you have to receive Him.
There's this whole thing of receiving. Jesus makes it very clear in that principle, He says: if you receive a prophet in the name of a prophet, if you recognise what God has put on the person's life, and receive the person as that to you, then God will ensure that what He has for you, will flow into your life through that person. If you look at a person and see the shortcomings, the character faults, the humanity; if you see only that, then you won't receive them. You will judge them, and when you judge them, you'll start to dishonour and reject them. You'll stop the gift flowing into your life. It's a most extraordinary thing, if we can receive and make people welcome, and not be judgemental of them, we will unlock what God has for us in their life. I wonder how many people God brought into your life to help you, and you shut down what they could do, because you judged them?
There's a situation - I won't go into it, I'll just give it to you right now - Jesus was going through the town of Samaria. There were sick people, there were demonised people, there were troubled people, tormented people, and Jesus was there to help them; and it says: they did not receive Him, because He looked like He was going to go to Jerusalem. So the disciples felt greatly rejected, and they said: let's call down fire on these people. Jesus said: no, leave them alone, you don't know what spirit you are. Now get this, here's the thing; because they didn't receive Him, it stopped the gifts flowing to touch them, and that day that He walked through that area, there were people could have been healed, but weren't; there were people who could have been blind eyes opened, deaf ears opened, but they weren't, because of one thing. They just did not receive Jesus. Now why did they not receive Him? Very simply, they had a prejudice, a racial and religious prejudice.
Prejudice can stop you receiving people. Racial prejudice can stop you receiving people. Religious prejudice can stop you receiving people. Intellectual or social prejudice can stop you receiving people. One of the things, the great things that God had to teach us, when we went to Dannevirke - we did come from an educated background. I did a masters degree, and met Joy in university, we did university degrees, but when we went to this church in Dannevirke, there wasn't a single person with any qualification above School Certificate, not one. Socially, it wasn't great either. They were all workers and labourers and whatever, so it was a totally different social group, but we knew God wanted us there, and I learnt things because I received them. Some of the greatest people I've met in my life, that helped me change and be who I am, I met there, and because they loved me, and I received them, I was able to receive an impartation of what they had. You see pride is a terrible thing, causes us to judge, find fault, see the worst, and build a wall that stops you receiving.
I challenge you to do these things, because the Bible's very clear. Whoever received Jesus, then receives power to become something different. But what if Jesus sent someone to you? You see, if you can receive them, then it'll unlock what God has in their life for you. Now some people that Jesus sends to us are quite difficult. It's hard to see that they actually got sent by God to us. Think about that - but Joseph, at the end when the brothers came to him, he said: don't be upset about yourselves for sending me off to Egypt. He said: it wasn't you who sent me, it was God sent me. So he could look, and he could see actually, the very things that were in his brothers was actually a gift of God, to shape and prepare his character for his destiny. So God will send some people into your life who are incredibly difficult. Those difficult people are actually a gift of God, for you to grow your character, and to develop grace in your life.
How many have got some difficult people right now, can think of them right now? How many of you are reacting right now to that difficult person? Why don't you actually change your attitude, and actually say: I'm going to find every way I can to honour, and place value on them. I'm going to just welcome them, and receive them just for who they are. I may not like them, may not get on well with them, but I'm going to receive them and welcome them, and I'm going to thank God for them in my life, and ask God to use them to develop in me what He wants to do. You know what will happen? You'll grow real quick, and they'll change, or you'll change, or the circumstance will change. It always happens. It always happens. So this is a very simple principle; so let me ask you this: how much have you chosen to adopt honour as a lifestyle? To honour and value people, people over you, but also people around you, and also people who may work to serve you? How many of you honour them, and treat them with respect and dignity? I've seen some people treat those who serve in shops with incredible disrespect, just because they're serving in the shop. I've seen people treat waitresses at a restaurant with incredible disrespect, and you feel quite grieved for them, that they're treated so dishonourably.
So it doesn't matter where people are, practice this one thing, treating people with honour and respect. Treat them as a person of immense value, and place value on them, appreciate them, thank them. That's one of the greatest ways you can honour people, just to thank them, and not take them for granted. So are there people that you need to honour, respect, and start to show gratitude? Could you start to practice gratitude daily, to the people that God brings into your life? They don't come announced: God sent me. They just come. It's whether you can see them, and receive them, and honour them, and value them.
I tell you this, if you'll start to honour the people God brings into your life - they're not hundreds, they're actually quite limited - and start to intentionally, every day, honour and value them and treat them with respect, treat their opinions with respect, and start to value them, you'll start to gather and attract people into your life, and probably win a lot more people to Christ. Think then about people that you receive. How many times have you had a reserve, a judgement, something about a person, and instead of receiving them and celebrating them, you walled them out? That's called an offence. You say: oh well, I was discerning. No, no, no, no, you just didn't have enough love to celebrate them and receive them. Think about that. Jesus knew all of the disciples, including Judas. He knew exactly what he was like, but he could still eat a meal with him, sleep with him, walk with him, and trust ministry to him, even give the finances to him. That's the Jesus we follow. He practices honour and respect.
The Bible says in Romans 15:7, receive one another, as Jesus has received you. Did He know all about your stuff? Did He make you really welcome in your life? He has, and that's how you treat people. Do you see stuff? Of course you see it. Do you have to make sure that you're cautious about it? Sure you do. You've got to be wise, and not just take everything, but you know you can still reach out, and love and welcome people, and make them feel glad to be with you, because of the honour, respect and appreciation you give to them, when they're with you.
Let's just close our eyes right now. Those principles will help you. They'll change you. Start at home, start with your family, start with your mum and dad, start with brothers and sisters, start with those around you. Let me just ask you this question: do you intentionally practice honour and respect? Secondly, are there people that you have shown disrespect to, because you're familiar with them? It's a terrible thing, familiarity. People get to know you. I've found that very difficult. I'm a Pastor, I'm a person too, and I've got shortcomings. The closer people get to me, the easier it is for them to see the shortcomings. You only see me at a meeting, very much, but it's not so much you get near enough to see the shortcomings. My wife sees those, staff see those, and that's where grace is needed, not to end up despising and dishonouring, because you see the weaknesses in people.
There's a decision I made with my Pastor, never to despise him because of the humanity that I saw, but to recognise the gift that he was to me from God, and I thank God for him to this day. I can think of other ministers God brought in my life. Every one of them fell over in adultery, yet I honour them and thank God for them, because they were great men, who put great things into my life. I choose not to be offended by their failure, and God has helped me because of that. So are there people that you judge because of race? You look at them, and something rises up, and instead of receiving them, you feel this wall of reserve. Is it because of social status? Is it because of finance, so if people are wealthy, will you treat them better than someone else - people obviously poor, oh well, you just don't have so much to do with them? That's not receiving people as Christ received us.
In the community when you go, do you notice people, start to pay attention to the people, the people who serve you in the bank, and the tellers, and the various people that you meet? I tell you, if you were to ask God: teach me how to honour and respect the people around me, show me every time I dishonour and disrespect someone and don't receive them, welcoming them like you've welcomed me, show it to me. Would you put that challenge out to God today? I'm sure He'll start to show you all kinds of things, and your life will start to change.
So what has God spoken to you today? What is it you need to make an adjustment? What will you do when you leave this place? I think your whole life could change. I think that you'll start to see around you, wonderful gifts of God, saved and unsaved gifts of God, people that can help you, if you can honour and respect them, and accept them unconditionally in your life, and start to build the connection with them, with those underlying values. Your life will begin to change. Your influence will begin to change. You will begin to change. Wouldn't that be worth it? Wouldn't that be worth it? You say Amen.
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“Two Principles that Release the Best in People”
· How you respond to people determines what you receive from them.
· People are a gift of God to us.
· Two keys to releasing what is in others.
· Mk.6:1-5 Jesus in His home town.
· “Could do no mighty work there”
· Jesus anointed to meet needs of people.
· All the power of God was available.
· Jesus was God’s answer – provision.
· Dishonour/Disrespect – stopped the flow.
(i) Familiarity – family his own house
· Familiarity breeds disrespect – e.g. Miriam and Moses
· They saw and were familiar with natural
· Familiarity hindered seeing God’s provision.
· When disrespect you block what God has to help you through that person.
· Men need to be respected to function.
(ii) Offense – they were offended at Him
· Disrespect and familiarity lead to offense.
· Offense builds walls in heart.
· Offended that God would help them through this person.
· They recognised what he did elsewhere but did not see he was God’s answer.
(iii)Greatest need men have is for respect
· Men need to be treated with respect. Respect, honour releases what they have.
· God treated men with respect.
e.g. Jud.6:2 Gideon – fearful – Mighty Man
Heb.11:32 Samson – sex- Man of Faith
Heb.11:24 Moses – murder – Man of Faith
Heb.11:17 Abram – liar – Father of Nations
· God sees every flaw in men but treats them with respect and honour.
· Honour is your gift to people.
· When you honour people you unlock the gift that is within them.
Spouse – boss – child – leader
People in community
· “Honour all Men” 1 Peter 2:17
· Rom.12:10 “In honour preferring one another”
· Honour/respect gives access to relationship
· Dishonour/disrespect shuts down relationship
Mt.10:40 “He who receives you receives Me”
Receive person = receive reward of God
Receive = to embrace unconditionally
= unlocks what God has to give you.
· Receive people as a gift of God to you and you release what God has put in them for you.
· Receive = to welcome – be grateful for.
e.g. Receive Holy Spirit = receive person power God
Receive Jesus = receive access family God
= receive access to the Father
Jn. 1:12 “To as many as received Him gave
Lk.9:53 “Not receive Him = no power released.
· Offended and judgemental – Not Receive
· When judge others cannot receive from them.
· Rom.15:7 “Receive one another as Christ received”.
· Can live with a person and not honour or receive them.
Who do I need to honour/receive?
Who have I dishonoured and not received?