How do we honor other people? We could bow, salute, or give an ovation. Another way to honor the achievement or position of others is with an appropriate title. A list of examples (in no particular order!) may help:
- Mr. Mayor
- Your Honor
- Mr. President
- Your Highness
- Mr. Speaker
- Dr. (insert name)
- Rev. (insert name)
Which of these honorable titles would you want? And if I told you there was an honor far greater than anything on that list would you prefer it instead? Would you believe that five words could be a desirable life summary?
Honor That Matters
I recently preached messages on John’s epistles. And I have intended to share a specific part of that work. John gave an unusual honor to a man we only know because 3 John was addressed to him. How awesome would it be if your private letter to a friend was preserved in Scripture?
The time came to share my thoughts. But it happened at a time and in a way that was unexpected! I was writing my own letter – to people who support this ministry. And my work in 3 John just ‘leaked out’ onto my keyboard! So this post is a follow-up to that letter.
I shared several ministry and mission needs. The last item was the $4,000.00 it will take to get a church construction project finished in the Dominican Republic. And then this question flashed through my thoughts: How do people receive that kind of news and/or information? What follows is a piece of that letter. And then we’ll get to the honor that matters!
From The Letter
We are still in need of helping hands for Fall mission projects…We need hands and dollars. It will take about $4,000.00 for that project. So, how is that information received? Let me a make a suggestion – from Scripture of course!
Take a look at Third John – (not John 3). The Apostle referred to Gaius as a fellow worker in the Truth. John’s comments do not indicate Gaius physically labored with anyone. John commended him for supplying the needs of many in ministry. And Gaius didn’t supply sparingly. John says Gaius supplied them in a manner worthy of the Gospel – he was generous.
There are some folks like Gaius who supply this ministry. Even with such awesome support, the opportunities exceed the supplies on hand. So, the needs must be shared. And that brings me back to my question of how news of such needs is received.
It seems Gaius received the news of ministry needs as an invitation or opportunity. And that is as it should be. We each have the opportunity to do what we are capable of doing. Jesus saw the widow’s mites (pennies) and said her offering was the largest! It was what she could do.
And remember, our opportunities come from many places. Your church is an ongoing opportunity to be a vital part of ministry. So, take a lesson from Gaius. Always seize the moment and be a fellow worker in the Truth!
The Honor That Matters
There are many reasons to share this on a larger scale. First is to honor every “Gaius” engaged in this ministry. So many are generous with their talents, time, and treasures. They are like John’s friend, Gaius. And consider this. It wasn’t some random thought that honored these people with the title: Fellow Workers in the Truth. John’s writing was divinely inspired. So that gives us insight into what our Father thinks!
Second, we all need encouragement. Honesty tells us we have many good intentions, But sometimes we lack the necessary actions that turn intentions into reality. Sharing these thoughts may encourage you to engage with us, sponsor a pastor, and/or contribute to a mission project.
Third, there is the element of redemption. God redeems sinful people. He can also redeem the things corrupted by sinful people. Culture is in constant need of redemption. And one small way to fight back is to put a good, God-honoring thing in your thoughts.
Did you notice (1st paragraph of this section) how I typed John’s words? It was Fellow Workers in the Truth. I abbreviated that in the post title as FWT. Unfortunately, you probably know that rearranging those three letters can represent a vulgar, slang expression. So anywhere or everywhere you run across that vulgarity, just think: FWT – Fellow Workers in the Truth.
5 Word Life Summary
And finally, titles like FWT are the ones we should desire the most. The song lyric says: Kings and kingdoms will all pass away, but there’s something about that Name. Jesus’ name matters. Being identified with His Kingdom matters. And no matter what other titles one may be granted, they will pass away and be of no value.
Five words really can be a great summary of one’s life! So I leave you where I left the letter:
Take a lesson from Gaius. Always seize the moment and be a Fellow Worker in the Truth!
Soli Deo Gloria!