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To Be Of No Reputation

Humbling Ourselves for His Glory

Author: Jo-Anne Leroux

“Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of
no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death,
even the death of the cross.” Philippians 2: 6-8

To be of no reputation… no reputation: humble! This passage in Philippians holds a key to our

ability to do only as the Father shows us. John 5:19 In our fallen state, we care very much
about our reputations. We want to have a good one. Why? Because our acceptance by man
depends upon it, not only for ourselves personally, but for our ministries, jobs, friends and
families. We pride ourselves in our reputations.

Most Christians do not have much trouble giving God the glory when things go well: a person
gets saved or has a breakthrough as a result of their ministry. But when things don‟t turn out,
they will take on the failure as if they did something wrong. This mindset is purely self-centered.
What man perceives as a failure, God does not. The Lord calls us to reap the souls of men for
the kingdom, but He also tells us when. The harvest must be ripe for the picking. Revelation

For our own good, the Lord allows us to follow the path that leads to misery and death until we
hurt badly enough to call out to be saved. Our fruit is soft and ripe. If you are in this place be
encouraged. God is about to take you to into glory. As long as life is going tickety boo,
however, we are not going to change. Why would anyone want to die to self when they‟re so
comfortable? We are like hard green fruit.

Any of us who has even the smallest amount of love in our hearts, does not like to see other
people hurt. It‟s distressing. In fact, often when we see someone hurting, we also hurt. We
will take on the pain of others to the degree in which we are unhealed of our own hurts. Our
natural response is to comfort them, believing we are compassionate, hence alleviating their
pain and ours. Since the counterfeit appears the same as the authentic, we can remain in this
delusion until we are overwhelmed with the burden. Who is the Saviour? If you identify with
this at all, your fruit is getting ripe also. You are about to surrender your reputation for good
works and let the Lord work through you.

“But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate,
submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.” James 3:17 NKJ To be
impartial and remain sincere, we must be willing to lay down our need to be liked and risk
rejection. There is a price to pay. “Remember the word that I said to you, „A servant is not
greater than his master.‟ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My
word, they will keep yours also.” John 15:20

We cannot know the will of the Father if we cannot allow the pain of separation to ripen the fruit
for the harvest. It‟s all about source of supply. With the freedom of no reputation, we can
discern when the fruit is ripe or green. With green fruit, we know to just shine the Son on it. But
when it‟s ripe, we can use the sword of the Spirit to bring in the harvest. As we draw love from
the Father, our hearts fill and we experience a great compassion for the lost. Although they
may hurt, our hearts have love. Even without words, we can pour out this supernatural Love
and heal the wounded.
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I will share testimony with you on how the Lord has dealt with my reputation. There are levels of
freedom in shifting out of this, glory to glory. It‟s big! It all started in 1989 when I was extremely
intent on spiritual growth, more out of fear of returning to addiction than pure love of God. But
the Lord is merciful. He let me burn out on believing I was helping others. I seemed to attract
people who wanted someone to depend on. I was there for anyone who wanted my ear or
words of wisdom, including family….as if I had any to give. One day, as I had overloaded
myself, the Lord sovereignty removed the reward I had been getting out of this and revealed my
self-serving motive.

“You are feeding your ego Jo-Anne,” He said to me. “You see yourself as superior and it makes
you feel important. The truth is that you are afraid they will abandon you if they don‟t need you.”
His voice was almost audible it was so loud. I was in shock! I had been using the counseling
gift He had given me for my own gain. I was corrupt. We corrupt spiritual gifts if used for self-
gain. Mathew 7:21-23. My repentance was like a new birth. I felt so fragile. This was all I‟d
known for years. I‟d become a nurse because of it. I had to make a conscious decision to stay
out of the helping professions for a season for fear of returning to the old way. It took about two
years of walking this out before I felt solid. The Lord says we will hate sin. The prospect of
being exalted again just felt plain lonely.

This experience was what I would term a major correction from the Lord. But we aren‟t home-
free yet. The manifestation of my reputation being at stake gets more subtle. Another way of
putting this would be to have an investment in the outcome of a situation for the sake of a good
rep. Jacques and I opened Still Life Retreat in the spring of 1999 in answer to a direct call from
the Lord. I remember thinking that the Lord was now willing to entrust me with His children
since this issue has been dealt with.

Not so fast Jo-Anne. After a few years of ministry, in which we definitively witnessed the move
of God in many lives, the Lord woke me up one day with a scripture verse on my heart. "Foxes
have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head."
Mathew 8:20 For two days this verse repeated over and over in my head. I began to speak it
out loud; sang it; rhymed it. No other thought was present except this. Finally, I asked the Lord
what He was telling me. “You have to give me your desire for the people on retreat to have
breakthrough.” “Isn‟t that a good thing Lord?” “Yes, but you‟ve got your reputation at stake
again. If they don‟t get breakthrough, it‟s a reflection on you, not Me.” Oh my!!

“Yes”, He went on to say. “Give it up. Get out of My way and watch Me move. Give Me this
and I will promise you that everyone who crosses this threshold will receive a touch from Me.”
Whoa !!! I let go. The third morning I woke up and the verse had changed. "Foxes have holes
and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has a place to lay his head." Jesus was
true to His word and I experienced a new depth of freedom and glory. It‟s exciting and restful
all rolled into one when we let go and let God.

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