Respect. We Need Moore.
That guy in the picture is Dr. Russell Moore, President/CEO of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. He's a man I respect, for more than one reason.
He has all the credentials , of course, and from where I sit, he's doing a terrific job. But there's another reason.
After he'd been elected to the position, but before his inauguration, he had occasion to come and preach at a Samford Chapel Service. I learned about it, and Peg & I went to see & hear him.
After the service, I walked over to where he was, and he called me by name. That wasn't surprising, really, as I've spoken from the floor at the convention, a number of times, and I wouldn't doubt that there are more folks that know who I am, than folks I know myself.
What gave me cause to pause was that he called me "Mr. Cleveland".
I'm not really used to that.
Same scenario at the next SBC Annual Meeting; we saw each other in the hall and spoke for a few minutes.
I called him "Dr. Moore", for the same reason I call Sheri Klouda "Dr. Klouda" when addressing her. There are some people that I simply want to know I respect their position and their accomplishments, every time I see them, and it's also my way of reminding myself of those things.
Now: Dr. Moore could certainly call me by my first name, and it would be completely OK if he did. And I figure, at my age, I could probably call him by his first name, too. But I don't want to.
Respect ... demonstrated ... is an endangered commodity these days, and there's something so ... so .. just so right ... about showing that, in how we address each other ... when we're not everyday "buddies" ... that I have no desire to give up that little bit of that endangered commodity, Especially when addressing people of substantial accomplishment and position.
When I was an insurance broker, I had a client who operated a Child Care Center. I always addressed her as Mrs. Johnson, and she always addressed me as Mr. Cleveland. With real emphasis on the "title". Now, we got to be really good friends over the years, but there was just something so right about how we addressed each other, that I had no bit of a desire to change that. Not one bit.
If any of my friends from church, or members of my SS class read this, don't think I have any desire for anyone to address me differently from how they already do. That's not the point.
Respect is the point. Simply being respectful is Moore To The Point.