Respect is a fragile thing. We all, at some level, want the respect of others. We want to be valued for our abilities or our accomplishments. We feel good when others offer deference or compliments because of the wisdom or character they value in us.
When we attempt to gain respect and are able to do so, then the overwhelming challenge of maintaining it takes center stage in our performance focus. If the number and diversity of people who might offer us the respect we seek grows, then our efforts to maintain our position in the eyes of many is a juggling act not likely to last forever.
Sooner or later, we drop the ball. Our human condition breaks through and the ability to maintain or exceed our peaks of performance is exhausted. Then relationships can be damaged from the disappointments and individual confidence takes a hit which could affect the entire house of cards built around our best efforts to succeed.
There is only one form of performance or leadership that is worthy of respect and sustainable beyond our excellence (or lack of). The only sustainable vehicle for a position of recognition is submission and service. Only when we choose to serve others for their benefit and not for our own gain will we enjoy the Peace of our position.
It’s upside down and backwards from what it is usually made out to be. The least does become the greatest and the greatest will become the least. To give up the striving towards position and accomplishment for the rest of second place is a Life multiplier. When we allow Life to be multiplied through us, we are restored and refreshed for continued multiplication.