Do those closest to you respect you most?

In our lives, certain people will know us intimately while others remain acquaintances and everyone else will be scattered somewhere along the spectrum in between. We'll choose to reveal deeper parts of ourselves to some people because we come to trust them, often because they choose to reveal deeper parts of themselves as well. Sharing those personal aspects of who we are is a natural thing to do as relationships progress. Others we've just met and are perfectly fine with keeping conversation within the realm of small talk and commonalities. But as you grow in deeper relationship with people, our hope would be that they would come to respect us more, not less.

Some people are great at putting up a respectable false-front. They can schmooze and charm and filter to make themselves look incredible. But as you get to know them, you begin to uncover what they've been hiding all this time. And if those things aren't very desirable, you begin to respect them less.

Others, on the other hand, provide you with a very pleasant and reasonable first-impression, but their humility and servant's heart doesn't put up a false front. Rather, as you get to know them better, you're uncovering all of the amazing parts of who they are and you respect them more.

I want the people who know me the best to respect me the most.
— Joshua DuBois, President Obama's "Pastor-in-Chief" and Head of the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships

We should fare toward the latter for a few reasons. First of all, if we are only respected at a surface level, we'll be tempted to keep all of our relationships shallow and never be vulnerable with anyone. Secondly, I believe that keeping greatness under wraps shows a level of humility that is echoed through Scripture when Jesus tells us, "But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing," (Matthew 6:3). This is the posture and attitude with which we should live our lives and if we do so, we'll naturally fall into that second category of people. As we open up to people and reveal our heart — joys, pains, screw-ups and all — they should come to respect us even more.