Jaime Wyrtzen Lauze´
Do you like being on the receiving end of criticism? No? Well, neither do I, but I do have some thoughts about it.
While there is such a thing as constructive criticism, it has to be under strict parameters. The right thing can be said the wrong way at the wrong time.
Much of the Gospel of Mark shows how the Pharisees were constantly criticizing Jesus and trying to set Him up. In church vernacular, this is called a “critical spirit.” It can ruin people, churches, and ministries. Criticism can be a sign that you are doing something right. Everyone’s been guilty of criticizing unfairly. But in these particular Biblical examples, the focus is on legalistic unbelievers. When a Christian or a ministry or a church is in God’s will, unfair criticism is sure to follow.
What’s the difference between fair and unfair criticism? Fair criticism is based on both truth and love given by the right person at the right time. Unfair criticism is the opposite. Unfair criticism may rejoice in the truth, but not the love. It resists God’s work and God’s people. It is jealous. It desires to tear down people. It seeks to control.
Jesus responded in an interesting way. He corrected the Pharisees’ errors with scripture. Another reason to know our Bible! He usually had an audience so He took the opportunity to use the situation to explain a higher truth.
So the next time you are criticized, ask yourself, “was this given with both biblical truth and love?” If you find yourself in a situation where you need to speak up, ask yourself, “is this the truth and am I the right person to say something at this time?”
For more from Christine Wyrtzen and Jaime Wyrtzen Lauze, please visit www.daughtersofpromise.org