What kind of reputation do you have? What do others say about you? Even if they speak well of you, that doesn’t mean they understand your life of obedience nor the God you serve. See what the officials of King Ben-Hadad of Syria said about Israel’s King Ahab:
His advisers said to him, “Look, we have heard that the kings of the Israelite dynasty are kind. Allow us to put sackcloth around our waists and ropes on our heads and surrender to the king of Israel. Maybe he will spare our lives.”
2 Kings 20:31 NET
Ahab spared Ben-Hadad’s life. Except that the Lord had ordered he be killed. Was Ahab more just, more merciful, than God? Certainly not! In this case, God gave the victory to Israel over Syria and commanded that the enemy king be destroyed.
Because of his disobedience, the Lord said that Ahab would die in Ben-Hadad’s place (verse 42).
The Syrians understood nothing about God. They said he was god of the mountains, but not of the plains. Nor did they understand God’s people. King Ahab’s reputation of being kind earned him no advantage.
Better to be known as someone who obeys God in everything than to have a reputation of being merciful and kind. Don’t you think?
Merciful Father, may I care more about your opinion of me, than my reputation in the midst of people of the world.