Sometimes I think the hardest thing I deal with is, the realization that I have a bad reputation. There are those of you who have fallen into sin and as a result, your reputation has been greatly damaged like mine. The Bible talks about having a good name and deep inside of our hearts, we grieve because our name is no longer good in the eyes of others. I long for my name not to be associated with scandal and failure. Sometimes. I think my heart becomes the heaviest when I have built a good reputation with someone and then for whatever reason, they read all the garbage about me from people they don’t even know and that reputation is tarnished.
I met with a dear brother today. and we talked about how difficult it is to feel as though your reputation has been totally tainted and soiled. If you are one who has lost your reputation because of sin, I want to be an encouragement to you today.
1. One of the greatest things that Jesus did in order to fulfill His purpose was, to become of no reputation. An eternity of a perfect reputation was instantaneously sacrificed. He who had the reputation of being a creator, lost that reputation and became the created. He who had the reputation of being the Spirit of Truth became mere flesh. How much reputation did He give up? So much, that He came and dwelt among us sinners. He was called a sinner. He was called the devil. Neither of these were true of Him. Yet, He gave up that perfect reputation for me. He understands how I feel. When we feel hurt because of our lost reputation, Jesus understands how we feel.
2. A reputation that has been destroyed can be turned into a testimony that can be used. That may be one of the sweetest things you will ever hear. Think about it. A ruined reputation is a potential testimony. God will take the one who has lost his or her reputation and use that one to do something for Him. This means that God isn’t looking for good reputations. Sometimes good reputations create pride. God is looking for testimonies of His grace. I can be that. So can you.
3. My reputation does not reflect my righteousness in Him. You can take away my reputation, but I am covered with His robe of Righteousness. What you know about me is not what He sees in me. My reputation has nothing to do with my standing with God. I stand as though I were Christ and I wear His Righteousness as my own.
4. When I stand before God, my reputation will be totally righteous. God will not see the Internet garbage. God will not google my name. God will not ask my critics (slanderers) for their opinion of me. God will judge me based upon his own Son who fulfilled all righteousness and who gave me iHs perfect reputation.
5. That means that one day this ruined reputation will be gone for eternity and I will live with a perfect reputation. My reputation will not be based upon what I have done or what people have said about me. My reputation will eternally be the reputation of one who is saved by grace and washed in the blood of Christ.
Make no mistake about it, losing your reputation is a very painful thing. It is perhaps the one thing that my pride struggles with the most. I want to make it very clear, sometimes it’s better to have a bad reputation and be right with God than to have a good reputation and not be truly right in your relationship with Him. Don’t miss that. If God has to take away our reputation to bring us to himself, then so be it. We are better off. Do not allow your soiled reputation to steal your joy. Take these thoughts and apply them and rejoice that even our Savior understands our feelings.