Earlier in the week I posted an article about being willing to suffer wrong in the face of those who wish to do us harm. After sharing it I came across a wonderful quote from F.B. Meyer that is at least parenthetically related. He counsels us on what to do when others attack our character and seek to harm our name. In short: wait on the Lord.
We are very anxious about our character, but if we live close to Christ, men will impute to us all manner of evil. They will impugn our motives, misrepresent our actions, and circulate malicious stories about us. The nearer we live to Christ the more certain it is it will be so, that if they called Him Beelzebub they will call us the same.
My belief is that we should be very careless about these things, and that the only time when we should defend our character should be when aspersions on it may injure the cause of Christ; that as far as we are concerned we should be content to lose our character and be counted the off-scouring of all things.
When these reports are circulating, and these stories being told, and these unkind words being hurled from lip to lip, we should immediately turn to our Master and tell Him we are content to suffer with and for Him. Ask Him to intercede for and to vindicate us, if it is His will we should be vindicated, and if not, to give us grace to suffer patiently and wait.
We are so eager to stand well; we are so sorry if the least thing is said against us; we are so irritated if we are misunderstood and misrepresented; we are so anxious to write the explanatory letter to the paper or the private individual. It is a profound mistake. We should be content to trust God with the aspersion, to leave to Him our vindication, and meanwhile to plod on, doing our work quietly day by day, as in His sight, only being more tender and thoughtful and careful of those who have done us wrong.
That is the true Christian spirit.