I recently received a message from a critic. I cannot judge the intent of this individual. We all receive criticism at times. Some of us receive it more than others. I want to examine the criticism I received and make some practical application to us all as we receive criticism.
Be willing to search your own heart to see what parts of the criticism might be accurate. In this case, some of the things that were said were accurate. I was told my perspective is limited. That is totally true. I grew up attending a Christian school for my entire education. Then I went off to attend a college with the same views. After that, I went to work for churches with the same views. Sounds limited, doesn’t it? I can’t undo my past. Truthfully, none of us can. We can try to remove reminders, but it still exists. I’m so thankful God can and will use me, limitations and all!
Be willing to correct what needs to be corrected. I know that, going forward, I can listen and glean from different perspectives. That does not mean I have to agree. That willingness will often need to lead to repentance in cases when it is a matter of sin.
Eat the meat and leave the bone. Criticism can be skewed to some degree. I’m not sure if this individual was telling me to be quiet because of my limited perspective. If that is the case, none of us should speak. God is the only one with unlimited perspective, and He is the only One who is 100 percent correctp pop 100 percent of the time. I will do my best to speak when the Spirit says speak (or write) and be quiet when appropriate. God knows I have been very quiet on many things over the last few years because I didn’t need to throw another opinion out there. Plus, to be honest with you, I didn’t want the drama, and I knew the comments could get venomous.
Be sure that you will have critics if you haven’t already. Some mean well, while others don’t. Don’t be like me and internalize it. I was about ready to quit everything and wait for Jesus to come get me. I don’t say that in the strictest sense, but I had to just remember God will pull the plug on my life when He is done with me. While that criticism was being used by the devil, I had to redirect my focus to how God will use me at His discretion. My job is to be available, obedient, and content with however He chooses or does not choose to use me. At the end of the day, do your best to be who God wants you to be and let Him do the rest. We won’t hit perfection, and that’s okay. No saint of God had it all together, so I’m not the first. I’m just another story of how God makes beautiful things out of the dust, and so are you! Let Him have the final say!