APPRECIATE PEOPLE

WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL

MARCH 05, 2024

TOPIC: APPRECIATE PEOPLE

BY T. O. BANSO

The Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, for he often refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain;  but when he arrived in Rome, he sought me out very zealously and found me. The Lord grant to him that he may find mercy from the Lord in that Day—and you know very well how many ways he ministered to me at Ephesus” (2 Timothy 1:16-18 New King James Version).

Learn to appreciate people– recognize their good qualities, value, importance, and good deeds. People are more important than things. People are more important than projects, money, food, etc. Don’t despise people. Hardly can you do anything without human beings! Money is not everything. If you have money but you don’t have the right people to do what you want to do, you are still handicapped.

If you appreciate people, your life will appreciate! If you don’t appreciate people, your life will depreciate. Whatever you appreciate in people will appreciate. Jesus died for people. When Jesus started His ministry, He had to work with people of diverse backgrounds. He chose a team of twelve disciples (Matthew 10:1-4). Everybody had His strengths and weaknesses.

Jesus worked with them, though they were not perfect; and nobody is. Jesus appreciated His disciples. He committed His ministry into their hands before He ascended to heaven after His resurrection. He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, which He had told them about, the baptism of the Holy Spirit. He told them they would receive power when the Holy Spirit had come upon them and they would be  His witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth (Acts 1:4-8). Jesus appreciated His disciples. He worked with them and depended on them to continue His ministry.

Nehemiah worked with people to rebuild the Jerusalem wall. They completed the work in a record time of 52 days despite all intimidation, threats, lies, and propaganda (Nehemiah 6:15).

Nehemiah acknowledged the people who worked with him to achieve the feat. In Nehemiah 3, he took time to highlight the specific contributions of others from the high priest to the priests, individuals, and families; he mentioned specific sections they built. He detailed what different people did. He didn’t praise himself but praised the people.

Nehemiah didn’t diminish the contributions of others to the success of the project as some would have done. In Nehemiah 7:70-72, he mentioned the gifts of some family leaders, the governor, the other leaders, and what the rest of the people gave towards the project. Appreciate people.

Deborah, the only female judge in Israel, also appreciated people. He sent for Barak, charged him to raise a 10,000 army, and encouraged him by going with him to the battle. She believed in his leadership. In her song after the victory over the Canaanites, she acknowledged the leaders who led and the willingness of the people who willingly offered themselves (Judges 5:2).

In verse 9, she said her heart was with the rulers of Israel who offered themselves willingly with the people. In verses 13-15, she mentioned the role played by the people of the Lord from Ephraim, Benjamin, Makir, and Zebulun, and the princes of Issachar. Verse 18 says Zebulun risked his life, as did Naphtali, on the battlefield. She appreciated Jael, the woman who killed the Canaanite’s army commander, Sisera (verse 24). Deborah appreciated everyone’s contribution. She didn’t give credit to herself and Barak who led the army.

Appreciate people. You need them. Paul appreciated people. They played important roles in his ministry. In appreciation, he spoke well of Timothy, Titus, Epaphroditus, Philemon, Onesiphorus, and the Macedonian churches, among others. (Romans 16:21, 1 Corinthians 4:17, 16:10; 1 Timothy 1:2; Titus 1:4; 2 Corinthians 2:13; 7:14; 8:23; 12:18; Philippians 2:25-30, 4:18; 2 Timothy 1:16-18; 2 Corinthians 8:1-7; Philemon 4-7).

In appreciation of the household of Onesiphorus, Paul said, “The Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, for he often refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain;  but when he arrived in Rome, he sought me out very zealously and found me. The Lord grant to him that he may find mercy from the Lord in that Day—and you know very well how many ways he ministered to me at Ephesus” (2 Timothy 1:16-18 New King James Version). Paul equally devoted a whole chapter, Romans 16, to greeting people dear to him; he mentioned them individually.

Paul wrote to the Corinthians: “I praise and appreciate you because you remember me in everything and you firmly hold to the traditions [the substance of my instructions], just as I have passed them on to you” (1 Corinthians 11:2 Amplified Bible). Note the phrase “I praise and appreciate you.” Appreciate people.

You can’t succeed alone. Appreciate people. Appreciate your family members, staff, neighbours, colleagues, friends, benefactors, and others. They are not perfect, just like you, but recognize their good qualities, value, importance, and contributions. Let them feel appreciated. Don’t wait until you lose people or they die before you appreciate them. Tell them now that you appreciate them. Tell them often. It makes people feel good and motivates them to do more.

TAKE ACTION!

If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and cannot save yourself, and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.

Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner, and I cannot save myself.  I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.

I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.

PRAYER POINTS: Father, help me to appreciate the people you have brought into my life. I shall not abuse anyone who comes my way in Jesus’ name. Holy Spirit, help me to build people and not destroy them.

(For over 900 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).

T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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