Of no reputation

Author’s note: Since it is sometimes difficult to convey tone with the typed word, I want to say at the outset that my words here are not meant to sound blaming, self pitying, or whining, merely observant.

It is a strange thing when one realizes that people are talking. About them, that is.

In the past couple of days, this has become my realization. One friend told me of an overheard conversation; another related how someone unconnected to our situation identified me as ______ . One meant no disrespect I’m sure (or I hope); the intent of the other is less clear.

When we embarked on this leap of faith, I did my research. I counted the cost. I knew it would be hard. In fact, I confessed to my husband that I wasn’t sure I had what it takes, however much I longed to be obedient.

I neglected to consider that people would talk. I forget I live in a small town! πŸ™‚

Being the people pleaser / approval addict that I am–the hermit who cherishes her anonymity–knowing people are talking is disconcerting, to say the least. To realize my motives may be misrepresented and misunderstood is not only frustrating, but prime funk-inducing material.

Part of me wishes she could confront the talk with the truth of her heart. Impossible, I know, yet I wish I could know that my reputation will emerge from this intact. The problem is, I have no such guarantees. In contrast, I have the example of my Lord who made Himself of no reputation, without a word in His own defense.

May I forget myself and look to Him.

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Author: Lisa Spence

Wife, mother, Bible teacher, bibliophile, occasional blogger

11 thoughts on “Of no reputation”

  1. Your posts always make me examine my own life. I am constantly amazed at how much our thoughts & posts mirror each other! I've just written about letting go of my need to people-please. Tough stuff!Continuing to pray…

  2. I think till the day we die God will be teaching us new things through relationship. I was just saying to Dear and my family last night that we are all a bunch of Chritian jerks that sometimes get it right. I included me in that. Every day I think I should pray. Lord Jesus Have mercy on me a sinner. Then maybe I should add and let me forgive the sinners around me…Hang in there Lisa!

  3. This so resonated with me. I am the ultimate People Pleaser. And I like to be right. And so many times God has convicted me with Phil. 2 – that Jesus was the ultimate One Who was always right…and sometimes He kept His mouth shut and knew that the temporal moment was not the time to be vindicated. Something I struggle with on a frequent basis.Love your honesty. Hang in there, friend!

  4. My best friend always tells me, “Let God take care of your reputation.” I think it’s good advice. The only opinion that matters is God’s.

  5. Friend Lisa,I am taken back to a time 3 years ago, when some pretty tough stuff was happening for us, not long before our move. People were talking. Untruths were being aired. You will remember my dilemma, about whether to confront, or not. You were instrumental in helping me to realize that the Lord would take care of it; that I was to turn away from the lies and let the Truth that lived in me, speak for itself. And I believe that it did, and that it has.Know that God is in the funk with you. Don’t give in to the enemy’s attempts to pull you away from what you’ve felt compelled to do. (whatever that is – I am out of touch…) Trust the Holy Spirit that lives in you, and just stand. And wait. The funk will clear, and God will be glorified. He IS being glorified.

  6. Lisa,I stumbled upon you, and am once again amazed at Providence. He always knows what I need to hear. Dealing with some tongue-wagging in this world too. Thank you for strengthening me, for being a fellow traveler in this journey.Warmly,Laura

  7. Keep up the good fight Lisa, standing up for God and his people is never easy. Yes, people will talk, that is human nature, unfortunately, but keep holding on to God he will bring you through this.We love you and are praying for you daily.Rachael

  8. My best friend recently made a very difficult decision in her life. It came after much prayer and thought and seeking God’s will. I have recently heard criticism of her because of that decision, and I just want to tell these people off (not very Christian, I know) because I know her heart and I feel like if they actually did, they would not be so quick to criticize. I feel much the same when I read this about you. “Can’t you see her heart?” I hope they are able to, but if they never do, God does. And that’s enough.

  9. Lisa, your ability to see to the heart of the matter always amazes and encourages me. I have a streak of people-pleaser in me too, and I really struggle when I think others are labeling me negatively or even talking about me questionably. The Lord knows your heart and knows how diligently you have sought Him and sought to honor Him throughout this situation. And your reputation before Him is what truly counts.

  10. Lisa, I too am a people pleaser and that has caused no end of pain in my life. The Lord has shown me recently how I have let people have a position in my life that they shouldn’t. One story that keeps resonating with me today is the story of Stephen. He let the Lord be his vindicator and while he was stoned to death, the Lord was right there with him and he got his ultimate reward. If you read Acts 7:54, when Stephen was about to be stoned, he looked to Heaven and saw Jesus STANDING at the right hand of the Father. I just read today that in every other reference Jesus is SEATED at the right hand of the Father, but in Stephen’s moment of need, Jesus rose to his feet. He is standing for you, and He will carry you through this time.

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