Romans 12:10 states that we should “outdo one another in showing honor.” I love that. We should go out of the way to honor others. Remember, honor is given, while respect is earned. Showing honor is something that we should practice no matter how we feel about a person.
I spoke about the principle of honor on Sunday. When I think about people who deserve honor and who have played an integral part in the success and growth of Avalon Church, the list is very long. I think about the families that helped us start the church from day one. There are a couple of families that are still here serving and making a difference. In fact, one of our staff pastors, Justin McIntyre, was a teenager when we started the church and his family was one of the original founding families. Neil and Bonnie Gardner were also there at the beginning and they are serving as short-term missionaries in Indonesia until May. I believe that our elders and deacons deserve honor for their commitment and involvement. Our staff deserves honor for all of their contributions. Our volunteers especially deserve honor because they make this place run. All the generous donors deserve honor. Without them, none of this is possible. I could mention many others.
One person that I believe deserves special honor is my wife, Kim. So often the lead pastor or the founding pastor gets a lot of accolades, whether it is deserved or not. But I can honestly say that our church would not exist without Kim and her tireless involvement and her tremendous sacrifice. She is not only the co-founder of Avalon, I believe she is the heart behind our church. She has worked tirelessly for thousands of hours when no one was looking. She has carried the burden, the love, and the passion for this church day and night, week in and week out. She has encouraged and supported me more times than I can count. I can truly say that if not for her, I would have quit a long time ago. She shares my burdens and pains, cheers me up and cheers me on, loves the people of Avalon deeply, prays, leads, teaches, encourages, prods, and invests in others. She has a heart for the hurting and the down-and-out. I have never seen a person who truly cares more for those who could never pay her back. She is a leader, a true Christ-follower, an example for all, a tireless worker, a true friend, an encourager, and, best of all, she is my wife. I would not trade her for a thousand others. Thank you, Kim. As King Lemuel wrote in Proverbs 31, “your price is far above rubies.”