In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me? (Ps. 56:4)

“HE FIRED ME,” I told an old friend over the phone.

“I thought he might,” he said kindly.

I was still reeling. How was I going to support my family now? I was still in my twenties, first job on staff at a church. I took the position believing the senior pastor was a Christian man and soon found out it wasn’t true.

“Oh, you’re one of those Jesus people,” the pastor said, mocking me six weeks into the job.

“Yeah, well, aren’t you?” I asked, naïve and confused.

“No, I’m not, and you’re a narrow-minded fool to believe Jesus Christ is God’s only way of salvation! No one with half a brain believes that anymore.”

I was in shock. At once, I called my old friend who’d been a pastor most of his life.

“I’m supposed to preach soon,” I told him, scared. “If I do, he’ll fire me. I know he will.”

“That’s right. That’s how it works,” he affirmed. “And no matter what mortal man can do to us, the principle of Scripture never changes: the Lord honors those who honor Him.”

I took that to heart and preached that Sunday as a “Jesus person” would. The next day, the pastor called me into his office only to belly laugh at everything I’d said in the sermon.

And laugh . . .

And laugh . . .

And then he fired me.

When attacked, make choices—like the psalmist—to trust the Lord today.

Thaddeus Barnum is the author of the devotionals Real IdentityandReal Love(WPH), as well as a pastor in Connecticut.