Lord, YHWH Almighty, may those who hope in you not be disgraced because of me; God of Israel, may those who seek you not be put to shame because of me. – Psalms 69:6
In my pastoral ministry, there were times when some church members were very angry over decisions I had made. Some were upset because they did not have all of the facts that led to the decision, and once they had more information, they understood the direction I had taken. A few others remained angry because their emotions blocked their ability to discern or hear the truth. And, yes, there were some who were rightly frustrated because I just had not led well.
On the other hand, there have also been moments in my ministry when people wanted to defend me from a perceived “attack” and while it felt good to know that someone was “on my side,” it also made me uncomfortable. I was concerned about agreement that was rooted more in friendship than fellowship, that they might somehow miss “God’s side” in the equation. Of course, I believed that this is where I stood, but what He wanted was more important than any other opinion.
We all may have an innate need to be vindicated, to be “right,” but it must never be about us, our pride, or our reputation. It must always be about Jesus, no matter the personal cost. He does not need to be vindicated, so why should we?
God has nothing to say to the self-righteous. – Dwight L. Moody