The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has a statement of Core Values. Ask any deputy, they can easily recite it for you. The first line of the Core Values states, “I commit myself to honorably perform my duties.” The concept of honor is, sadly, considered out-of-date these days. In truth, it has always been in short supply. It is human nature to seek to divert responsibility from oneself.
Honor is not pride. Legitimate pride is founded on honor. Honor is not duty. Commitment to duty comes only with a concept of personal honor. Honor cannot be imposed externally. It is a choice. Once made, it provides an internal anchor that holds one firm in shifting circumstances.
Honor is a personal commitment to do what is right. It shows the correct path to take when your personal safety or reputation might tempt you to do what is less than right. Honor is what makes you stand up and take the heat when you deserve it.
Honor is the hard way. It is much easier to go-with-the-flow, but a person of honor does what is right, not what is easy. Personal honor is actually an anomaly. It is human nature to put yourself first, to shift blame. Honor is something higher than self-interest. A healthy society could not exist apart from the exercise of personal honor. Yet, honor is not merely a ‘good idea.’ “Hey, why don’t we have honor, then we can have society?” It is a calling to go above and beyond what is natural. In that sense, it is a divine calling. God’s call to “be holy for I am holy,” is a call to honor. In one sense, that call is impossible. In another, it is a call to rise above the self and do what is right; simply because it is right.
Leviticus 20:26 “Thus you are to be holy to Me, for I the Lord am holy; and I have set you apart from the peoples to be Mine.” 1 Peter 1:16 “it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”