How many people allow this question to terrorize them? I would say the vast majority of people allow this question to eat away at their spirit. I have.
When I returned to this area in January 2014, this question plagued me. All I could think was that I left the area on a high note. I had a good music ministry and was headed into my first pastorate, only to come back with no job, no wife, and only one child temporarily. I went back to the church where I previously served my first Wednesday back in town. I sat on the back row thinking that my life was over. I was simply existing. No one ever said that to me. However, that is what the enemy wanted me to think.
When I took a break later from church ministry, the same question ate away at me. I wondered what people were thinking. Was I a “has-been”? Did they consider me to be out of God’s will? Were they gossiping about how I had “backslidden”? I hate to say that it didn’t end there.
When I announced that I was starting a church, I felt so stupid. Who was I to start a church? I didn’t grow up in Oconee County. I didn’t have the following that other pastors in the area have. What would people think about the “twice married Matthew” starting a church? None of that should matter.
The bottom line is, “What does God think about it?” Is God pleased with my life? So what if people are talking behind my back. They will have to give account for what they say to the Lord Jesus as will I.
With that in mind, I have to block out the noise and let people be people. I have One Master to please, and His name is Jesus! I’ll leave you with this song.
7 thoughts on “What Do/Will People Think of Me?”
The Lord calls those who are humble. He cannot use the proud. Look at his disciples? Not one of them a Pharisee or Sadducee. They thought they had it all together. They were so proud they could not accept new light, especially from a poor young man from Nazareth who had no schooling. You are in good company.
I Corinthians 1 says it well…He uses the weak to confound the wise…that no flesh should glory in His presence.
I know I did, for quite some time. Now not as much 😀
People will be people but one thing is certain, we shall all account for the things we say.
That is most humbling!
Keep serving and loving the Almighty Master and King of the universe with your whole heart, soul, mund and strength. On Judgment Day, He’s the One, full of mercy and truth, we will be facing.
Exodus 34: 6-7 “Yahweh passed by before him, and proclaimed, “Yahweh! Yahweh, a merciful and gracious God, slow to anger, and abundant in loving kindness and truth,
7 keeping loving kindness for thousands, forgiving iniquity and disobedience and sin; and who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, and on the children’s children, on the third and on the fourth generation.”
This is all that matters now that we understand. Thank you for writing and sharing this story.
Kind regards to you and your wife.
I remember telling a regional leader over a get to know you/interview lunch that I got sick and was out of full time ministry for a while.
I never thought twice about using the term sick until he said something about my burn out. The only problem was I didn’t burn out I actually was diagnosed with a few chronic illnesses unrelated to my job.
All this to say I can be always trying to figure out what people think of me but in the end there will be something that will come up that I never could have guessed so why worry (easier said than done).
I have started to ask God to reveal to me any misunderstanding or misconception that needs to be addressed and the rest teach me to let it go.
I did learn one thing, as a pastor if you burn out you call it getting sick, if you get sick it appears you need an itemized list of what you have and maybe a doctor’s note 😉