Brother Ron Barnes
Founder and Pastor
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Brother Ron answers your questions about religion, spirituality and ministry
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Does It Hurt When Someone Underestimates You?
Dear Brother Ron
We have these family friends who used to be very close to us. Whenever my mom has problems regarding our family, including financial problems, she shares them with these friends. We are not really very poor but because we don't have a father anymore, we are always having financial problems. There are six of us in the family and three of us are in college right now. Even though I have two brothers who are helping my mom to send us to college, it still not enough.
Our family's friends are not rich either. Actually we have about the same status of living.
But sometimes they are acting as if they were someone higher, and as if we don't have space in this world. The youngest of them who used to be our schoolmate now in college asked me one time, "Oh, it's so good you are going here now."
He meant the school cafeteria. I felt like I was so small at that time. I felt insulted but I just kept it inside and even smiled at him. It hurts, right?
People have been underestimating me all my life. My parents were both in the beauty business. I worked with them helping them to run the largest beauty school in Oklahoma for 19 years. Since I was a man in the beauty business, everybody thought I was gay.
I was a Marine from 1966 to 1972. This was when the Viet Nam war was going full blast. The war was very unpopular. Since I was a Marine, everybody thought I was a soulless baby killer.
I was a professional musician for many years. Of course everybody knows musicians are a bunch of drunks and dope addicts. In truth, I am not gay, I am not a drunk or a dope addict and I have never killed babies or innocent civilians.
The point is that nobody knows enough about you to make judgments about you but you and God. All your life, people are going to assume they know enough about you to make judgments. They are wrong. That won't stop them from doing it.
By the way, the person you quoted showed his ignorance by trying to put you down for your financial status. Jesus was a big fan of the poor. In fact, Jesus Himself was homeless. We find in Matthew 8:20, "And Jesus saith unto him, 'The Foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests: but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head". So I guess your friend would consider Him inferior too.
You need to realize that you are a child of the living infinite God who loves you. If you are good enough for God to love, you are good enough for you to love. If God loves you (which He does) and you love you, what the ignorant people think does not matter.
By the way, I can relate to the problems your family is having with trying to finance multiple college educations. Please visit the education page of my career ministry at http://opng8.org/education.html. There you will find links to many scholarship search engines. Hopefully, you will be able to find sources of financing which can ease your financial burden.
Let me know if I can be of further assistance.