Brad Johnson tells about a soloist performing a song that Christian artist Sandi Patti made popular several years ago entitled “In Heaven’s Eyes.” The audience was enraptured as he sang:
A fervent prayer rose up to heaven
A fragile soul is losing ground
Sorting through the earthly babel
Heaven heard the sound
This was a life of no distinction
No successes, only tries
Yet gazing down on this unlovely one
There was love in heaven’s eyes
While he sang a woman ran out of the audience onto the stage. It was obvious she was not a threat to the performer as she had some obvious physical and mental challenges.
As the ushers rushed to the stage to take the woman away, the soloist waved them off, scooted next to the woman, put her arm around the woman and kept singing:
In heaven’s eyes there are no losers
In heaven’s eyes no hopeless cause
Only people like you with feelings like me
Amazed by the grace we can find
In heaven’s eyes.
What a great message for that woman to hear! And what a great attitude the soloist showed to a fellow human being in need of help, encouragement and care.
Our word of the week is “respect.”
Respect involves honor, esteem, and deference to others. It values others. Treats them with dignity. And is gracious.
The Bible has a good bit to say about the spirit of respect we should have toward other people in various relationships.
(1) Brethren in God’s church should treat one another with respect.
“Love one another warmly as Christian brothers, and be eager to show respect for one another.”(Rom. 12:10)
(2) Those in positions of governmental authority ought be accorded respect.
“Give to everyone what you owe them: Pay your taxes and government fees to those who collect them, and give respect and honor to those who are in authority.” (Rom 13:7)
(3) Shepherds in God’s church deserve our respect.
“We ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, 13 and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work.” (1 Thess 5:12-13)
(4) Wives are commanded to express respect for the headship of their husbands.
“So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” (Eph 5:33)
(5) Husbands are admonished to treat their wives with understanding, consideration and respect.
“In the same way you husbands must live with your wives with the proper understanding that they are the weaker sex. Treat them with respect, because they also will receive, together with you, God’s gift of life. Do this so that nothing will interfere with your prayers.” (1 Pet. 3:7)
(6) Children must be taught to honor and respect the authority of their parents.
“Respect your father and mother” is the first commandment that has a promise added: “so that all may go well with you, and you may live a long time in the land.” (Eph. 6:2-3)
(7) Even servants were to demonstrate respect for their masters.
“Servants, be submissive to your masters with all respect, not only to those who are good and gentle, but also to those who are unreasonable.” (1 Pet 2:18)
These passages remind us that people are important to God. And they should be important to me. People have worth. Value. Dignity. They are created in God’s image and after his likeness. In fact, the apostle Peter commands, “Respect all people” (1 Pet 2:7). In other words, show regard to others. Express appreciation. Convey kindness. No matter the social or economic status one has, he or she deserves our deference as a fellow human being with an eternal soul.
I believe God wants us to look at others through heaven’s eyes. Accord them proper respect. After all in heaven’s eyes there are no losers. No hopeless cause.
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman