When Jesus was stripped of his garments it was surmised and intended that he was being stripped of his honor and integrity thus calling into question all he had done and said.
By his humiliation it was to be assumed he had no power and all those who had been assisted, healed, and taught by him would, in their confusion, begin to doubt their own conversions and deeper understanding about the kingdom of God.
How many of us have been stripped of our job, our ministry or our position in life? Though others may or may not doubt all our efforts and determination to make a difference, we doubt ourselves. We may watch from a distance as all that we had built up, comes down and is replaced by that which is foreign to us or so in opposition to what we felt we had accomplished that we suffer all the more.
This is especially true when we work in ministry (and I don’t necessarily mean for the church because many of us have seen an aspect of ministry to our work regardless of the fact that we were being paid). It is so difficult to accept our stripping and we plunge headlong into the darkness of depression. Others around us may try to reassure us, others may add to our doubts. It is a lonely road. We lose our incentive to reach out to serve again.
At this point it would be so helpful if we could remember that regardless of the stripping of Jesus who had so much more to lose than we ever could; those who knew him, who walked with him and heard his words, and saw his works lost nothing by this act of stripping. The good that Jesus had done, the hearts he had touched were affected too deeply and their lives were too changed too much for them to doubt. They knew that Jesus had made a real difference in their lives, regardless of anything that was alleged now.
This is true for us as well. Though some may doubt our efforts and we may doubt ourselves, those whom we have touched will be forever changed and that really is all that matters.