You May Hate Me for Saying This

Are you afraid of what man will say if you love and serve the Lord, if you declare His name boldly, if you share the Gospel to a broken world, if you say the name Jesus where His name is not spoken, if you go outside the church walls and talk about your faith in Jesus? Ouch. Convicted. Most people I meet nowadays have never met the Lord, have met Him and turned away, or know Him but prefer to keep quiet about Him. Ouch. Convicted. If you are afraid, God has something in His Word to say to you.

“On the other hand, a considerable number from the ranks of the leaders did believe. But because of the Pharisees, they didn’t come out in the open with it. They were afraid of getting kicked out of the meeting place. When push came to shove they cared more for human approval than for God’s glory.” John 12:42-43, The Message Bible

I love this translation of these scriptures because the message cuts right to the heart. Sometimes I have been more afraid of human approval than I have been committed to glorifying the Lord God almighty. But the more I fall in love with Jesus, the more I skip, hop, dance, and chase after Him, the more I desire to share Him with our world – despite the consequences.

Yes, I am less popular. Yes, I face rejection. Yes, I am not always well loved for this. Yes, I am hated at times for this. Yes, I do not have man’s approval much of the time. Yes, I am sure people talk behind my back. Yes, loved ones have been wary of me. 

Yes, I love the Lord more than anyone or anything on this earth. Yes, I will continue to declare His name. Yes, I hate rejection, abandonment, and neglect more than many I know. Yes, I will risk all this for my first love – Jesus. 

Do I love man’s approval? Probably more than most. I have literally lusted after it. But I cannot have it both ways. I cannot have the approval of all humans and love and serve the Lord simultaneously. Is it an easy choice? Actually, for me it is. 

I grew up being unpopular. I was the book worm. I was the good student. I was the goody two shoes. I was the shy one, the quiet one, the average looking one. I was the one rejected. Abandoned. Neglected in a variety of ways, situations, and by various people I loved. Now I see my past as training ground.

I am so used to not being popular that I can handle it now for Jesus. Do I like it? I still hate it. But the blessing that comes in loving and serving the Lord above all else so far surpasses anything I can receive from man that I am sold out to loving and serving Him.

How about you? Are you still seeking the approval of man? Are you quiet about Jesus so you don’t offend anyone? Would you rather be popular than do what is right? 

I read somewhere a phenomenal question: What if when you get to heaven God points back at your life and shows you all the people that went to hell because you didn’t take the opportunity to share the Gospel with them? 

I add a question to this: What if those you know and those you meet could have a phenomenal life on earth by knowing Jesus but miss the boat because you are too afraid to tell them the truth about living life with Jesus as your number one love? 

Is Jesus your first love? If He is, why not share your love with a world that needs Him? If He is not your first love, now is the time to get your affairs in order. 

I take a risk in writing this. But there is a greater risk in not writing it. I could miss the opportunity to share with a world in need the greatest gift mankind has ever been given. Jesus. 

Is human approval more important than Jesus? 

No. Of course not. But knowing the right answer is not enough. 

Doing what is right is. Do not be afraid of what the world will say. The world is dying without Him. 

Declare His name. Shout from the rooftops. Share the Gospel. Tell a friend about Jesus. Give a Bible to a stranger. Help a homeless person find his Savior. Give a child an invitation to know the Lord. Do not hold back. Jesus did not hold back for us. Let us not let the fear of man keep us from doing what is our responsibility. 

Love the Lord with all your heart – and share His love with a world in need. 
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