as followers of Christ, our expectation should be that we will be hated. if there is anyone who looks favourably upon us, that is God’s grace and blessing – nothing more.
in fact, if we find ourselves being loved by the world, we must be very careful and examine our position. the reason popularity is so dangerous is that it makes you start thinking that your popularity is a result of something you’ve done and that you must work to keep it. that puts you in danger of compromising the truth, watering it down, repackaging it so it’s more “relevant”, “digestable”…more like what people want to hear than what they need to hear.
it’s not wrong for others to like you. but it must always be recognized as a blessing, rather than an entitlement; a gift, rather than a reward or something to be earned.
“For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.” (2 Tim 4:3-5)