Devotions

DEVOTION BY MARK FUGATE 

Why is everyone criticizing me?

Let me ask you – how many of you reading this today have ever been criticized?  Now in a moment of honest confession let me ask, how many of you have ever been the one doing the criticizing?  Ours has become a very critical society and everyone seems to participate.  We pay people to criticize music, art, politics, and athletics.  If you’re not critical in this society you are considered to be naïve or just not with it.  I really think a lot of American people, if they had been present at the feeding of the 5,000 would have criticized Jesus for not providing lemon for the fish or butter for the bread.  We need to realize that Bible believing Christians are probably going to be criticized more and more as our unchristian culture continues to morally spiral down.  So we as believers need to be prepared to handle the criticism.

Because if we’re not, many turn and run, or compromise or just throw in the towel when it comes our way.  There is such a thing as constructive criticism, and we need to learn to deal with that to allow it to make us better, but most of the time, criticism is not constructive at all.  It’s not meant to build us up but to tear us down.  Usually we don’t hear of it directly, it’s not factual, and it serves no positive purpose.  But it’s going to come and we need to learn to deal with it.  I have always been open for the most part to criticism that is given in love.  If I have a relationship with you and I trust you, and I know you love and care for me, then I can benefit from some honest criticism.  But that means we have a relationship – and that takes work.  This is where we fall short.  We are quick to criticize which is easy, but we are slow to build a relationship which is hard. Through all the years of ministry I have learned some really practical lessons and here are two of them.

  • #1. What people don’t know they will make up
  • #2.  People never make up good stuff

Let’s build each other up instead of tearing each other down.  Let’s encourage instead of bringing discouragement.  And when we criticize (and we will) let’s only do it in a spirit of love and concern for the person we care about.  I do think the phrase everyone’s a critic is pretty accurate.  Let’s make sure as believers we are the right kind of critic.

Marks Sig