If you ignore criticism, you will end in poverty and disgrace; if you accept criticism, you will be honored. Proverbs 13:18, NLT

Too often, we waste a lot of time and energy arguing and fussing with our critics. But, what if instead of focusing on the things we disagree with, we try to hear what the critic has to say and use it to improve ourselves? Even if the criticism is not accurate, what if we consider what can be learned from it? After all, most great performers and artists employ critics to point out flaws. Writers employ editors to point out the mistakes in their work, sometimes at great cost.

In Proverbs 13:18, God’s Word suggests that we can prevent entering into conflict with a critic by simply thanking him or her for their perspective. If our goal is to exercise our oneness with Christ by promoting love for others, then why risk hostility when we can choose to look for a silver lining in the unrequested cloud of criticism that occasionally comes our way? What if we prayed for our critics as well?

Dear Lord, please help us to be open to what others have to say. Help us to not take offense, but instead find ways to grow closer to You. May You be honored in all that we do in Your precious name. Amen.

Copyright Dr. Dan Elliott.

Dr. Elliott is a lifetime retired member of Christian Educators who lives in California.

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