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Public & Private Recognition

humility insights Joan Winifred never giving up! sacrifice & recognition

It seems like…(at times (in this world/system of things/framework of human society))

the wrong-doers are rewarded and the right-doers are punished.

It feels like…(at times) the suffering (albeit temporary) distorts “good decisions” as “missed opportunities”…(an amazing/encouraging point about sacrifice(s) read/studied today, Sunday, @ the mind gym (w/fam & friends)).

Us humans have a natural need to be appreciated, respected, loved.  We humans also have the tendency to get off-balance…out of whack.  We can crave OVER

-the-top

adulation, adoration…inappropriate forms of worshipful recognition…that may not match our actual accomplishment(s).

Stuff read putting recognition in proper perspective for me:) Check it out IF YOU:) so choose:) (my highlights)

 Jesus’ day, some religious leaders had the wrong view of recognition. Jesus warned his followers: “Beware of the scribes who like to walk around in robes and who love greetings in the marketplaces and front [“best,” ftn.] seats in the synagogues and the most prominent places at evening meals.” He went on to say: “These will receive a more severe judgment.” (Luke 20:46, 47) By contrast, Jesus commended a poor widow whose small contribution was likely not recognized by others. (Luke 21:1-4) Jesus’ view of recognition was obviously very different from that of others.

The Greatest Form of Recognition…(is it from fellow humans?!)

What is the greatest form of recognition, and why?

What, then, is the greatest form of recognition that we can strive for? It is not the kind of attention that people seek in the academic, business, and entertainment fields of this world. Rather, it is the kind that Paul described for us in these words: “Now that you have come to know God or, rather, have come to be known by God, how is it that you are turning back again to the weak and beggarly elementary things and want to slave for them over again?” (Gal. 4:9) What a wonderful privilege it is to “come to be known by God,” the Supreme Ruler of the universe! He is willing to have an intimate relationship with us. As one scholar stated, we “become objects of his favourable attention.” When Jehovah acknowledges us as his friends, we achieve the very reason for our existence.​—Eccl. 12:13, 14.

How do we put ourselves in a position to be known by God?

Moses experienced such a blessing. When he pleaded with Jehovah to allow him to come to know His ways more fully, Jehovah replied: “I will also do this thing that you request, because you have found favor in my eyes and I know you by name.” (Ex. 33:12-17) We likewise can receive wonderful blessings when Jehovah comes to know us personally. But how can we put ourselves in a position to be known by Jehovah? We do that when we come to love him and dedicate our life to him.​—Read 1 Corinthians 8:3.

Private v. Public Recognition…contrasted in Bible:

Jehovah may give us recognition in ways we may never expect. Those who do good deeds purely to be seen by men are told that they will have no reward at all from Jehovah. Why? Their reward has already been paid in full when they receive praise from others. (Read Matthew 6:1-5.) However, Jesus said that his Father “looks on in secret” at those who do not receive due credit for the good they do to others. He notices those acts and repays each person accordingly. However, at times Jehovah rewards us in unexpected ways.

example: Mary

When it came time for God’s Son to be born as a human, Jehovah selected a humble virgin girl, Mary, to be the mother of this special child. Mary lived in the insignificant city of Nazareth, far from Jerusalem and its magnificent temple(Read Luke 1:26-33.) Why was Mary chosen for this privilege? She was told by the angel Gabriel that she had “found favor with God.” Mary revealed her deep spirituality when she later spoke to her relative Elizabeth. (Luke 1:46-55) Yes, Jehovah had been observing Mary, and he granted her this unexpected privilege because of her faithfulness.

In what way was due recognition given at the time of Jesus’ birth and when he was taken to the temple 40 days later?

When Mary eventually gave birth to Jesus, Jehovah did not honor any of the prominent officials or rulers in Jerusalem and Bethlehem by letting them know what had happened. Angels appeared to lowly shepherds who were caring for sheep in the fields outside Bethlehem. (Luke 2:8-14) These shepherds then visited the newborn baby. (Luke 2:15-17) How pleasantly surprised Mary and Joseph must have been to see Jesus honored in such a manner! Consider the contrast between Jehovah’s way of doing things and that of the Devil. When Satan sent astrologers to visit Jesus and his parents, all of Jerusalem became agitated at the news of Jesus’ birth. (Matt. 2:3) This very public announcement of Jesus’ birth ultimately resulted in the death of many innocent children.​—Matt. 2:16.

Forty days after Jesus’ birth, Mary was required to present an offering to Jehovah at the temple in Jerusalem, about six miles (9 km) from Bethlehem. (Luke 2:22-24) As Mary traveled with Joseph and Jesus, she may have wondered if the officiating priest would make some special acknowledgment of Jesus’ future role. Recognition did come, but not in the way Mary may have expected. Instead, Jehovah used a “righteous and devout” man named Simeon, along with an 84-year-old widow, the prophetess Anna, to acknowledge that this child would become the promised Messiah, or Christ.​Luke 2:25-38.

What blessings did Mary receive from Jehovah?

What about Mary? Did Jehovah continue to show her due recognition for faithfully caring for and raising his Son? Yes, he did. God had her actions and words recorded in the Bible. Apparently, Mary was not in a position to travel with Jesus during the three and a half years of his ministry. Perhaps as a widow, Mary had to stay in Nazareth. But even though she missed out on many privileges, she was able to be with Jesus at the time of his death. (John 19:26) Later, though, Mary was in Jerusalem along with the disciples during the days leading up to Pentecost when holy spirit was poured out. (Acts 1:13, 14) She was likely anointed along with the others present. If so, this would mean that she was given the opportunity to be in heaven with Jesus for all eternity. What a beautiful reward for her faithful service!

example:  Jesus
Jesus did not want honor from the religious or political leaders. But three times, Jehovah spoke directly from heaven, thus letting his Son know that he loved him. That must have encouraged Jesus very much! Just after Jesus was baptized in the Jordan River, Jehovah said: “This is my Son, the beloved, whom I have approved.” (Matthew 3:17) It seems that John the Baptist was the only other person who heard those words. Then, about a year before Jesus’ death, three of his apostles heard Jehovah say about Jesus: “This is my Son, the beloved, whom I have approved. Listen to him.” (Matthew 17:5) Finally, just a few days before Jesus’ death, Jehovah again spoke to his Son from heaven.​—John 12:28.

Jesus knew that people would call him a blasphemer and that he would die a shameful death. Still, he prayed that God’s will be done and not his. (Matthew 26:39, 42) “He endured a torture stake, despising shame,” because he wanted his Father’s recognition, not the world’s. (Hebrews 12:2) How did Jehovah give that recognition to Jesus?

When Jesus was on earth, he prayed to have the glory that he had before, when he was in heaven with his Father. (John 17:5) The Bible does not say anywhere that Jesus hoped to get more than that. He did not expect a special reward for doing Jehovah’s will on earth. But what did Jehovah do? He honored Jesus in an unexpected way. When Jehovah resurrected Jesus, he gave him “a superior position” in heaven. He also gave Jesus immortal spirit life, something that no one else had received before!*(This reward may have been unexpected, because immortality is not mentioned in the Hebrew Scriptures.) (Philippians 2:9; 1 Timothy 6:16) What an amazing way for Jehovah to reward Jesus for his faithful service!

Worldly influence?

Satan’s world can make us want to be famous and important. When this happens, we do not give our heavenly Father, Jehovah God, the recognition and worship that he deserves.​—Revelation 4:11.

What is the best kind of recognition? It is not the attention that many people try to get by means of higher education, success in business, or fame in the entertainment world.

Like Paul, when we came into the truth, we may have given up fame and success in Satan’s world. (Read Philippians 3:7, 8.) Maybe we gave up scholarships, good jobs, or opportunities to make lots of money. Or maybe we could have become famous or wealthy because we are talented in music or sports. But we rejected all those opportunities. (Hebrews 11:24-27) It would be very unwise to regret those good decisions and to feel that our lives would have been better if we had run after those things! Such an attitude could make us go back to the things of this world, the things that we had already decided were “weak and beggarly.”*(Other Bible translations use the words “useless,” “bankrupt,” “destitute,” and “miserable” instead of “beggarly.”)

Questions for Reflections:

am i known by people?

am i known by God?

whose recognition am i seeking?

am i slaving after weak, empty, spiritually bankrupt, worthless things?

am i slaving for spiritual riches and priceless things?

is private recognition (say from the Supreme Ruler of the Universe) enough for me?

am i seeking glory from men or God’s glory?

am i regretting any sacrifices (made in the past) for a good conscience (now in the present)?

what is a “good” decision?

what is a “real” opportunity?

the consolation prize?? or Grand Prize??

What will help us to look for Jehovah’s approval and not the world’s? We should focus on the fact that Jehovah always gives recognition to his faithful servants and that he often rewards them in unexpected ways. We can only try to imagine how Jehovah will bless us in the future! But for now, while we endure problems and difficulties in this wicked world, we must remember that this world is passing away. So any recognition from it will also pass away. (1 John 2:17) Our loving Father, Jehovah, on the other hand, will never forget our work and the love we show for his name, because he “is not unrighteous.” (Hebrews 6:10) He will certainly show that he approves of us, perhaps in ways that we have never even thought of! [Excerpted Article Readings: Whose Recognition Do You Seek? W July 2018]

9/10/18 @ 8:04 a.m.

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