Your Reputation Precedes You
Reputation matters. Traveling with friends, we were about ready for an evening meal. Before we piled into cars to go to dinner, no less than five of us were searching the internet to see what star ratings the restaurants had. Those with the best reputations for food, service, and cost quickly floated to the top, and we were on our way. We spent 30 minutes reading reviews and discussing where to go before even starting the car, and we made our decision on the restaurant’s reputation.
The same thing goes for just about everything we do. We might interview well for a job, but references often make the difference to employers. We pick a contractor to do work because we get a good reference from neighbors or friends. We might even pay a little more, but it’s the reputation that we’re paying for. The bigger the price, the more that is at stake, the more that reputation matters. I’ve heard people in small towns say that contractors live or die on their reputations. But in a sense, don’t we all?
The Old Testament talks about reputation in Joshua 2, and in this case, it was indeed a life and death matter. Joshua and the children of Israel were approaching Jericho to take it in battle (Joshua 2). Their reputation and the reputation of their God was known in the land of Jericho. Through the eyes of Rahab, we understand the fierceness of the Israelites (Joshua 2:8-11). She said she’d heard how God had dried up the waters, how the Israelites had killed two kings, and courage had been replaced by fear because of all that had happened. Rahab staked her very life and the lives of her family on the reputation of the God of Israel and Joshua’s warriors. Joshua’s reputation and the reputation of his troops mattered.
What is your reputation? What do neighbors say about us? What do co-workers say about us? How does our family see us? When it’s to breathe our last breath, what will people remember about us? Most importantly, what will God remember about us. To be sure, our reputation precedes us. Reputation matters.