Aretha Franklin sang about it and most of us grew up knowing what it was. Today is a completely different story. You and I are currently living in the most disrespectful, uncivil times in the history of our country.
When I was growing up, we were taught to respect our parents, our elders (essentially all adults), teachers, police officers, neighbors and more. We were taught to say, “Yes, sir.” and “Yes, ma’am.” We didn’t talk back to any adult regardless of who they were or even if we knew them. We were taught to be polite and say, “Please,” and “Thank you!” To be respectful of others and other’s property.
It was a different time and clearly a different world. So what happened?
Somehow we have raised a generation that respects no one, (not even themselves in too many cases) has their own agenda, and couldn’t care less about respecting others. Respect is no longer a core value for many, and something most no longer value at all.
For example, here are some ways we disrespect others.
1. When we’re on our phone when we drive. Whether it’s texting or checking Facebook/Twitter, while we’re driving, we are clearly showing a lack of respect for others even ourselves.
2. When we park in a space reserved for those needing accessible parking because we are in a hurry and don’t want to be inconvenienced and end up inconveniencing the very people who need that space. That’s very disrespectful.
3. When we’re late, that’s disrespectful. Period. Do you like it when you go to the doctor for an appointment at 1:30 and they don’t come and get you until 3:00? Case closed.
4. When we’re late for work, that’s disrespectful to the people we work for and the people we work with. Period.
5. When we cut in line anywhere for anything in front of anybody, that’s disrespectful.
“Somehow we have raised a generation that respects no one.”
6. When we mismanage our money and expect others to always bail us out, that’s disrespectful. Or when we borrow money from friends or family members and promise to pay them back and don’t. Yep. That’s disrespectful.
7. When we don’t allow others to even finish their sentences before interrupting them so we can say what we want to say, that’s disrespectful.
8. When we don’t keep commitments or fulfill our promises, that’s disrespectful.
9. When we listen to gossip about someone else, that’s disrespectful. It’s also dumb. The person who will talk to us about someone else will one day talk to someone else about us. Truth is, they probably already have.
10. When we have a problem with someone and talk to everyone else in our circle of friends except the person we have the problem with, that’s disrespectful. It’s also unbiblical (Matthew 18:15).
11. When we get on social media and attack others publicly when we haven’t spoken to them privately, that’s disrespectful.
12. Every time we choose to disobey God, guess what? It’s disrespectful. It’s also sin.
I could go on and on listing examples of how we show a lack of respect for others and even ourselves.
What would you add to the list?
Here’s what the Bible says, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:3-5).
In short, show some R-E-S-P-E-C-T!
© 2021. Barry L. Cameron
Barry L. Cameron has been the Senior Pastor of Crossroads since 1992 when the church was averaging 188 in morning worship. Pastor Cameron and his wife, Janis, have three children and two grandsons. He’s the author of the bestseller: The ABCs of Financial Freedom, Contagious Generosity, and The Financial Freedom Workbook. The Cameron family has been completely debt free since November 2001.