Darkness overshadows the onlookers. Thunder rumbles its displeasure in the distance. Wind howls swirling the leaves up from their damp resting places. The smell of decay pervades the nostrils of those few who have come to mourn. Not many are present. Not many others besides the few gathered even feel the loss, can even tell that it has passed into the abyss of time, never to be felt again. The mourners curl their hands around the dirt, grasping clumps just long enough to loose them over the lowered coffin. It’s a beautiful piece of handiwork inscribed with golden lettering. Bits of earth slowly muddle the name of the long lost, whose place in society was once so well regarded, so prevalent. The fading inscription burns itself into the minds of the mourners… “Here lies Honor. Once Beloved, Now Forgotten.” As the last few letters become obscured by dirt, the ominous clouds wretch open, pouring their tears for the world now without Honor.
I imagine there must have been a day as such… though how long ago I cannot say. Honor. The word itself is obsolete in today’s vocabulary. It has been erased by ignorance, selfishness, and malice.
Just the other day, my son and I were discussing his, ahem, how do I say this? His positively abhorrent behavior toward me (Seriously- I was thinking WHO IS THIS KID?). I reminded him that one of God’s top 10 commandments says, “Honor your father and mother” followed by some more very sage advice. But I could tell I had lost him. He piped up and asked me, “What does honor mean?” An excellent question! From there I was able to explain it to him… both the verb AND the noun. And as I write this, I cannot help but to wonder just how many people in my very limited audience of readers even knows what honor is? How many adults know less than my now enlightened 5-year-old? (FYI: verb- regard in high esteem. noun- high moral standards of behavior. Two of my favorites among other definitions. You’re welcome.)
We were once a society founded upon honor. An insult to honor was an invitation for a fight to the death. To impugn a lady’s honor was degrading to he who even considered it. Men sought to maintain their honor in words and deeds. Wars have been fought over honor, and history pleads for us to remember that honor was once her beloved.
What’s wrong with this world? Yes, we need Jesus. That much is understood, yet incredibly understated. But even if a person chooses to turn his back on Jesus, the least he can offer himself and society is a sense of honor. If a person possesses honor, he or she will ultimately fulfill a positive role within a society. He or she can bring about positive change, be a highly-regarded person of character, and interact with humanity that may be undeserved.
Look at every story in the media today and find what is lacking. In the center of it all, there is an incredible loss of honor leading to an overall loss of integrity and void of consideration for other human beings.
I daresay, ALL of the issues we have in America today ultimately boil down to the fact that we have killed and buried honor without the least bit of sentiment toward its loss. Few of us mourn it; even fewer know that it once existed.