Another vital area is consistency between my words and my actions.
I hope you've never said and never will use this phrase, "Do as I say, not as I do." Shame on you! Me, too.
It's better to say, "Shoot for what I'm shooting for. None of us are perfect but at least I'm striving for something. You strive for the same thing. Try to grow like I’m trying to grow in life." Words are not what are important. Words are not what are going to impact people. Our actions are what change people's lives.
I Samuel 16:7 (NIV) "Man looks at the outward appearance,but the LORD looks at the heart." That's what those who are closest to us see too. Our heart, the person we really are. That's what impacts them and influences them.
Whenever I get sick with a fever, I usually head to bed to sleep because no way does anybody want to be around me because I am contagious.
Your lifestyle is contagious. Your words aren't contagious but your lifestyle is. If you have a lifestyle that's filled with hypocracy, inconsistency, and you've sort of gotten used to this over a long period of time, those who are closest to you see it and they're going to want to run from you like the plague. We all hate hypocracy. If you could really see it in your own life instead of something you've gotten used to over a long period of time, you'd hate it in your own life. That's why many times in our relationships, those who are closest to us, seem to not want to be around us. As you struggle to be consistent, and it is a struggle, you can develop in your relationships a depth of love and respect that you never dreamed possible. That's the power of consistency.
Just a thought from the front porch…