Honoring God

In Malachi 1:6 God asks, "If I am a father, where is the honor due me? If I am a master, where is the respect due me?". For two weeks we discussed this passage... first from the angle of what we do wrong (how we "shortchange" God in our worship, prayer, giving of money, and service towards others), and this past week from the angle of what we could do better (how we can do better at giving God His due).  

In groups, our Sunday school members came up with the following list of practical actions we plan to take:

Ways to honor God, respect God, and give Him what He is due-

  • Worship --
    • set aside one hour on Sunday to turn your thoughts to God
    • choose and read a version of the Bible during the week that helps us understand more about God
    • take notes during sermon and revisit later in the day/week
  • Prayer -- 
    • Make it a priority (by doing it first thing, or by setting aside times during the day to do nothing but pray)
    • read scripture daily and listen to God speaking to me through the Bible
    • spend a whole week praying only for other people rather than for self
  • Giving Money --
    • review checkbook and notice priorities... choose one personal expense to give up and give that dollar amount to church
    • realize that God has provided for you throughout your life (and spend time praying about that)
    • set aside my offering/tithe FIRST at the beginning of the week before I begin the week's spending
    • make a jar for "redirecting funds towards God." Every time I might spend $5 or $10 or $50 on some treat for myself that I don't really need ( a Starbucks hot chocolate, a new yoga mat, a sweater, or a steak, or whatever), force myself to realize that I would have spent the money anyway, so I can afford to part with that dollar amount and put it into my jar. At the end of the week, redirect these funds which would have pampered myself towards God by giving them to the church or to charity
  • Serving Others --
    • Step outside of my normal "territories" of home and work and same old restaurants and grocery stores, so that I am exposed to different people and their needs
    • ask my family members each morning what I can do to help and do it
    • listen better, and infer what people's needs are so you can help in ways that actually help
    • ask God for direction and discernment