Destroy Your Reputation
When you decide to become a voice for Jesus it’s going to stir up trouble!
This trouble is going to come from all around you, but your most fierce opposition will come from two groups:
1. Close loved ones/friends
2. Religious people (those who find their identity in how much they “do” for God)
So after years of dealing with both groups, and me personally experiencing TONS of heartache and pain, my advice would be this:
Don’t be afraid. And don’t sin.
When you decide to live for Jesus, I mean REALLY stop living “one foot in, one foot out,” AND GIVE IT YOUR ALL, the devil will do his best to get you to react to your difficulties with FEAR or SIN. DON’T GIVE HIM HIS WAY!
Don’t take the bait. Don’t retaliate.
PAUSE. PRAY. PROCEED.
My friend, when you first come to know Christ and accept His wonderful free gift of forgiveness, at first, you feel wonderful! “I’M SAVED! I’M FREE! I’M FORGIVEN! I’M LOVED!”
This is the honeymoon stage and it is an absolutely wonderful feeling! But we all know that honeymoons don’t last but for a short time, and then the real work begins; the marriage – the relationship!
Now that you are walking through this life with Jesus, He is now expecting you to DO SOMETHING for Him, all the time!
Yes, you’re married, you’ve taken the vows and pledged your love, but that was only the beginning. Now you must walk out of the church, back down the isle, and begin your new life! How? BY ACTING! BY SHOWING HIM THAT YOU LOVE HIM!
By getting this good news out there for the world to know about, you are SHOWING Jesus that you love Him! Showing. Anyone can talk the talk, and take vows, but are you walking it out by showing how much you care?
I know you’ve got it in you, so as you do this… prepare yourself… you are about to come under attack unlike you’ve ever known before. But that’s okay because you now know WHO lives in you! JESUS! You and Him are ONE!
So you begin to fight back how HE wants you to, not how YOU are used to fighting. And that is with GOODNESS! We overcome EVIL with GOOD! Not with more evil! (Romans 12:21)
The enemy will attempt to use the actions of close loved ones and friends to make you want to fight in a non-Christ-like manner. Don’t do it! They will do their best to try to make you feel, and look, stupid; pay that no mind. You’re not stupid, you are ACTING on your calling!
The battle doesn’t end there. The religious people will ALSO try to make you think that you are doing things wrong or not “good enough.” Pay that no mind either, and instead, RESPECT THEM, and show them genuine love.
Yes, wise counsel is important, but BE CAREFUL. You can discern wise counsel from the jealous religious people who aren’t happy that you now want to live for Christ because “they’ve been doing it longer.”
These types of Christians are like the prodigal son who stayed home with the father (see Luke 15). They find their identity in how “good” they’ve been and for “how long”, and they don’t want to join in the celebration of your relationship with God. What’s most sad is that they are the ones missing out on the deep love of Christ because of their nasty hearts.
However, if they DON’T act this way towards you and they are correcting you with love, LISTEN TO THEM. It’s for your own good!
So today my friends, please, do this: KEEP GOING! KEEP GOING! KEEP GOING! Becoming a Christian is not simply a goal to achieve, it is a journey to begin! And this journey will not end until you meet Jesus face to face! So grow towards Christ each day, and let Him use YOU to show the world just who He really is. -Matt