There are a multitude of things that I admire and love about Jesus. One in particular happens to be how he never got ruffled by what people were saying about him. He was fully confident in his self-image and identity. Jesus never responded to what the people said about him or what they called him. Why? He knew who he was because right from the moment he was baptized by John. God had already declared who he was. It was later reaffirmed at the mount of transfiguration.
When I was working in the aviation business, my boss and mentor gave me a golden nugget that I’ve never forgotten. He said, “If you have to constantly tell someone who or what you are, it means that you really aren’t sure you’re that.” I had watched other in management in a number of companies we had worked together in, and the one difference between him and all the other managers is that they always had to command attention, respect and get people to follow them by stating who they were.
Jesus always came under attack and people always spoke about him. But I notice that Jesus never defended himself by stating that he was God or God’s son. Jesus let people say what they wanted. He let them draw their own conclusions because he knew the truth. When brought before the court system, he did not testify as to who he was, he let the evidence speak for itself. And even though he was crucified upon the cross, he was vindicated through his resurrection.
Do you always feel the need to defend yourself, your position, your title, your decisions, your place in life or your very name? If you do, keep these things in mind:
- People are always going to talk: No matter how hard you try, you can’t stop people from saying what’s on their minds. Everyone has an opinion about you, who you are and what you do. There is an old saying that, “You can’t stop the birds from flying over your head, but you can stop them from building a nest.” In other words, you can’t stop them from talking, but you can determine your response to it. You can become offended by it and stress out over trying to defend yourself or you can ignore it and let it fuel the fire in you to continue to do what you know is true.
- People can’t change truth: No matter how hard you try, truth is truth. Facts can be manipulated, but truth is truth. The more you attempt to defend truth, you rob yourself of time and energy.
- Your authority is not based in your title or position: Again, if you have to keep saying it, you just aren’t sure you who and what you say you are. Confidence and character go a long way in certifying your authority.
QUESTION: How do you handle accusations and ridicule?