I’ve heard it said that character is doing the right thing when no-one is looking. A man of character does not need to defend his reputation; he does not need an image consultant. He is what he is and eventually the truth will come out. Jesus told his disciples,
“Therefore do not fear them, for there is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the darkness, speak in the light; and what you hear whispered in you ear, proclaim upon the housetops.” (Matthew 10:26-27)
The follower of Christ who does the right thing and gets persecuted or defamed as a result, need not worry about what people think if he is right before God. God will defend his reputation. What is hidden will be revealed and the truth will triumph.
Sometimes doing the right thing will be misunderstood. Sometimes doing the right thing opens you up to attack from someone who sees it as weakness. Sometimes doing the right thing opens you up to attack by one who has something that he is trying to hide. Sometimes when you do the right thing people will misunderstand or misrepresent your motives. Sometimes doing the right thing is downright difficult.
But we have no other option than to do the right thing. To do it, we must maintain an eternal perspective. Paul reminds the Galatians that there is nothing that happens that falls outside of God’s observation. He writes in Galatians 6:7, “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.”
I am reminded of a verse in the old hymn, “Who is on the Lord’s Side?”:
Fierce may be the conflict,
Strong may be the foe,
But the King’s own army
None can overthrow.
Round His standard ranging
Victory is secure,
For His truth unchanging
Makes the triumph sure.
You and I are responsible for being obedient to what God has called us to do. We must do the right thing. God has taken on the responsibility for bringing about the triumph of the truth.
The outcome is sure if we stay the course.