“Turn away my reproach which I fear: for thy judgments are good.” Psalms 119:39
This is another one of the times where I feel like I can relate so much with the psalmist. He doesn’t want to be a blight on the testimony of God, nor does he want to be remembered for the times when he actually DID fail the Lord in his life.
He casts himself at the mercy of God because he knows that in God’s hands he will receive fair treatment, unlike that of those that would hold him to ridicule and judgment from man’s perspective.
None of us like being judged.
I remember as a teenager going into the 9th grade, I had made some spiritual decisions the days leading up to the first day of school. I had been to Bible camp and I truly wanted a change in my attitude and behavior. My Bible became my friend in those days and I was devoted to scrawling my thoughts inside a daily devotional someone had given me.
The first day of school finally arrived. I was an ugly little thing back then and my appearance was only made worse by the fact that my Mema had taken me to get a perm at her beauty salon. I looked like I belonged in an old black and white Bette Davis film by the style of hair I had that first day of 9th grade. I did my best to apply my make up and lip gloss to match with my outfit, it was 1984 after all and style was everything (or so I thought).
I sat down in a desk along the paneled wall of the large Christian school I attended and I watched as the pretty and popular crowd entered. They looked so flawless in their white pants, popped collars and perfect hair. They easily chatted with each other while I worried about whether or not there was food stuck in my big buck teeth.
The teacher called the class to order and I straightened myself in my desk, ready to be a straight A student for the first time in my life. After prayer the teacher asked our class to go around the room and give our names and something about ourselves. I nervously waited for my turn and then stood. I opened my mouth to say my name when the teacher waved her hand motioning me to take my seat and she said, “Oh, we know who you are, Loud Mouth Loyd”. The class burst into laughter, the snobby girls gave me cold glances and the guy I had a crush on laughed until it looked as though he would cry. My face burned with embarrassment and it made it to my heart in the form of seething anger.
I was thwarted from my new found faith in God and desire to become someone with a better testimony. Reproached for past sins and caused to bear them in public, I wept in my room that night and gave up.
What I should have done was rely on God to help me bear the weight of the times I had been a “Loud mouth Loyd” and allow the sweet balm of Gilead to sooth my soul in the spots that had been scalded with my teachers words. But I was immature and I let pain envelope me rather than the Word.
That wasn’t the last time something like this has happened to me and I am sure that you too can recall a moment in your life when you were held up for ridicule because of something you may have done.
These are the times we need to seek God’s wisdom in the Word and have the spiritual fortitude to trust Him to judge us and help us bear reproach we may face.
Sometimes we face reproach for simply obeying God and taking a stand. It is NOT easy is it? But we must not give up or give in to the pain. We must continue on fighting the good fight and waging the war. Our enemy is never going to stop trying to tear down our testimony and extinguish the light we shine for Christ. So we HAVE to rely on the Bible each and every single day.
“But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.” 1 Peter 5:10
Until Next Time, Lord willing,