The Price of Popularity By Theodore Epp
Popularity has its attractive side, but it carries with it spiritual dangers. There is always a price to pay for it, and sometimes it is too high. Some can handle popularity and not be hurt by it; others cannot.
Pride arising in the human heart for any reason is not good. Then there are always those who become jealous of anyone who seems to be well liked by others.
Perhaps these dangers, internal and external, help keep a person on the alert. The Lord knows how much any of us can take of these things and always provides a way of escape (see 1 Cor. 10:13).
David knew the source of his strength so that praise only caused him to give God the glory. It did not change his humble attitude toward life. On the other hand, Saul's reaction to the praise given David changed Saul for the worse.
Let us not become discouraged if, after we surrender our lives to God, He permits testings and trials to come. They will always come.
Young people write to me or speak to me in services about this. One of their most common questions is why things are so adverse after they have given themselves completely to the Lord.
We know first from the Scriptures and then from experience that testings are essential for our spiritual training. They are needed before God can trust us with the responsibilities of spiritual leadership.
"Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth" (Col. 3:2).