The singer steps on stage and the opening chords of the song fill the room. She inhales deeply and lifts the mic to sing. But what comes out is unrecognizable. Off key and offbeat, she smiles and sings confidently while the audience watches in shock.
When the judges give their critique, she defends her performance and her tantrum quickly becomes an Internet meme.
There’s nothing like seeing someone make a fool of themselves on TV to illustrate the danger of giving people undue honor. When we give people respect or admiration they haven’t earned, we set them up for failure.
Just like the singer who’s never been told she can’t sing, the fool in Proverbs 26 grows more foolish every time his folly is rewarded.
That’s one reason the Bible teaches us to give encouragement freely and to honor selectively. Everyone needs encouragement — to be reminded of who we are in Christ and the power available to us through the Holy Spirit. But honor is reserved for:
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