Lots of shame has been heaped on NFL and college football stars Ray Rice, Adrian Peterson, and James Winston. Rice was seen on videotape hitting his fiancé. Peterson is accused of disciplining his son so harshly that it turned into child abuse. Winston was suspended for climbing on a table at FSU and screaming obscenities.
It’s easy for us to point the finger in judgment at these men. Yet it is possible for followers of Jesus to bring shame to our name and, worse, to His name.
I once read that Christian leader, evangelist, and apologist Ravi Zacharias asked Billy Graham what he prays for every day. Graham’s reply: That he would do nothing that would jeopardize the things God had done in and through his life.
Billy Graham’s concern reminds me of a prayer from the Psalms.“Let not those who hope in you be put to shame through me, O Lord GOD of hosts; let not those who seek you be brought to dishonor through me, O God of Israel” (Psalm 69:6).
One click of a mouse that takes you to a sinful website can put any follower of Christ in a compromising situation and ruin a lifelong testimony. Solomon said it this way, “Dead flies make the perfumer’s ointment give off a stench; so a little folly outweighs wisdom and honor” (Ecclesiastes 10:1). A little folly – one sin, one lie, one fit of rage can undo a great reputation.
Billy Graham gets it. Do I? Do you? As Beloved Children of a holy heavenly Father, let’s join Billy Graham in prayer.
“Lord, let me do nothing that would jeopardize Your reputation – the things you have done in and through and with and for me. Deliver me from evil. In Jesus name, Amen.”