Oh, Burn!

My victory and honor come from God alone. He is my refuge, a rock where no enemy can reach me. ~ Psalm 62:7 (NLT)

We live in a day and age where a good burn is popular. For those who don’t know what that is, a burn is a put down, a criticism of someone else, which is very harsh, but often times is true. A good burn causes those who hear it (other than the target of the burn) to laugh because it is so harsh. In the music scene, there are free-style spoken word or rap battles where two artists make up rhymes which burn their opponent. We have television specials called “roasts” where friends approach a microphone in front of millions of viewers and tell embarrassing stories about the person who is the subject of the roast. In short, we live in a culture which values the ability to put others down for entertainment. We’ve created a society which values the ability to disrespect other people. (And we wonder why we have a mental health crisis…)

Unfortunately, this culture of disrespect has invaded the church. A good burn can consist of mocking the preaching style of the pastor. A good burn can be criticizing the passion with which one of the praise team members is singing. A good burn can be making fun of someone when they are reduced to tears because the gospel of Jesus finally broke through all of their mess and touched their heart. A good burn can be talking about how someone is not a “proper” Christian according to your standards. We disrespect our brothers and sisters.

Here’s the deal. If your honor, your reputation, your existence is shaped by what others think of you, then you will have a crummy life and an extremely weak faith. But, if your honor, your reputation, your life is secure in the One who made you, who forgives you, who saves you, then you will have a blessed life and a shatter-proof faith. Why? Because our honor isn’t based on mortals. Our honor is secured in Christ.

Instead of listening to those who love to roast you, listen to the One who loves you. King David gave us this truth for our verse today, “My victory and honor come from God alone. He is my refuge, a rock where no enemy can reach me.” Your honor, your reputation is secure in God alone. It doesn’t matter what other people think. It doesn’t matter what other people say. What matters is that God loves you, God forgives you, and Jesus is saving you.

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