It’s just a fact; nobody likes to be criticized. I remember as a child hearing disagreements between adults and thinking of exactly what needed to be said to solve it all. It all seemed so easy back then. Over the years the naïveté of those childhood thoughts has become more and more plain. There are times in which two people’s thinking is so far apart there’s no easy way to reach agreement. On the other hand, the criticism that hurts the most is that which comes from folks with whom you actually see eye-to-eye in most ways. If you’re alive, you’re going to be criticized. The wise person prepares to handle it in the best way possible.
If you can honestly say you’ve never criticized anyone for anything, come back and read this again when you’re in the mood to tell the truth! Criticism isn’t necessarily bad or wrong. The Bible commands faithful preachers to “reprove, rebuke, and exhort” (2Tim 4:2). The CEV renders it “You must correct people and point out their sins.” Sounds critical, doesn’t it? It’s constructive criticism, and we all need it from time to time. Yeah, “the truth hurts,” but when it helps you become a better person, “it hurts so good.” Don’t be a hypocrite. When criticized, try your best to honestly consider if the criticism is true. If so, humbly make a change.
If you do not believe the criticism is fair, you owe it to the criticizer to point out his or her mistake (Leviticus 19:17). If they won’t listen, kick the dust off your feet and keep going (Mark 6:11). If you’re criticized for doing right, you’re certainly in good company, for “If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household” (Matthew 10:25).
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