Respect… the 1828 Webster dictionary has a long list of uses for this word. I would list them all but it probably wouldn’t be that great of a read.
While I didn’t understand most of the definitions, the one I saw that I liked I put in this article: “Respect, that estimation or honor in which men hold the distinguished worth or substantial good qualities of others.”
My parents have always taught me to respect those around me, whether it is opening a door for someone at the grocery store, or just giving a friendly smile to an elderly person I go by. Even though they have taught me this I know I forget sometimes. Nowadays as you go through the grocery store you see people talking or texting with their phones or just going through the store acting as if they are the only one there.
They may walk by an elderly person who is feeling down, and they don’t even take a couple of seconds to smile at them as they go by. I think that a lot of young people today think that they know everything that there is to know, and they just go on ignoring people that they go by who they could probably learn a lot from. Like I said, I know I’m just as guilty as anyone else when it comes to this. I get too caught up in everyday life and sometimes forget about those around me. But like the dictionary definition says we need to respect those who have come before us, and look for “the distinguished worth and substantial good qualities” of others.
My mama’s grandpa used to tell her that he had never found someone who he couldn’t learn something from. If we could go through the rest of our lives with this kind of attitude, I can guarantee that we would know a lot more than we think we know.
So I encourage everyone out there to put a smile on your face for people you pass by; maybe call up a grandparent or aging relative and just ask them questions about how things were when they were growing up, or ask them how they are doing. Just show people that you care enough, that you respect them enough to hear what they have to say.