Why criticise others?: Part 2 - Hope 103.2

Why criticise others?: Part 2

Morning Devotions is for those curious about the Christian faith and who want to explore Christian issues that relate to their daily life.

By Chris WittsThursday 5 Dec 2013Morning Devotions with Chris WittsLifeReading Time: 0 minutes


And then there’s a spirit of negativity. Everything is wrong with the world.  Maybe you’ve had a rough day at work. Your boss has been annoying  you all day and you’re driving home,and you finally start to get out of the funk,but you are driving home with all the traffic and you’re getting a  little irritated. You’re looking forward to getting home to your wife’s hot meal. But your  wife has been working hard all day.. She knows you are coming home,and she’s thinking,”I’m going to get dinner ready. Your wife has been working real hard and you come walking in and you see the nice roast,the mashed potatoes. You see the kids,and then you scan left and you see the living room,and it’s a little cluttered,and there’s a laundry basket over there with clean clothes that haven’t been folded yet,and you look at your wife and you say: “What have you been doing all day? I go out there and I work hard so you can stay at home,and I come home to this mess. What in the world is going on?” And your wife,who has worked so hard getting ready to receive you,to have you come home,is just totally crushed now. You are just chipping away at her. Sometimes criticism can reveal itself through negativity.

And then of course there’s that awful word =  sarcasm. Remember this. Sarcasm is the most deceiving of all forms of criticism. We think we are being funny. “Oh,that doesn’t really hurt anybody. Nobody really believes that stuff. They don’t really feel it.” And all along,those little digs,those little jabs,  They are hurting people. Those little sarcasm’s,those little digs,those little opportunities,you know,to be cute and funny,what they really are,is little shots. They are chipping away at people,tearing them down. Sometimes we forget the power of our words. What we think is harmless – really isn’t. It is cutting people. It is hurting them. Criticism can reveal itself in so many different ways in our lives . Sometimes through jealousy,sometimes through negativity and sometimes through sarcasm. We need to learn to speak words of life – words that build people up and encourage them instead of words of criticism – words that tear people down and hurt them.

What does the bible have to say about our words? The Bible teaches us that our words have great power – for good and for bad. There are many passages that talk about this. Eg  Matthew 12:35-36 that our words reveal the condition of our hearts. If there is evil in our hearts,evil words will come out. If there is good in our hearts,good words will come out. Also from this same passage we learned that one day we will have to give account for our words – a very scary thought for some of us.

Proverbs 12:18 says: “Reckless words pierce like a sword,but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” Proverbs 18:21 says: “The tongue has the power of life and death,and those who love it will eat its fruit.” And finally,James 1:26 says: “If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue,he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.”

Whether we recognise it or not – our words have great power. It’s really important that we get this. We are deceiving ourselves if we think that our words of criticism are not damaging and hurting people. We tell ourselves things like this,”You know what? He deserved all he got ..  He had it coming.” A little punch here; a little jab there.

And that’s how those words of criticism feel coming out of our mouth. We think to ourselves,”We’re giving somebody a piece of our mind. Well,it’s about time somebody gave them a piece of their mind,and I’m glad I was the one to stand up and finally do it.” That sarcasm,that wit,we think to ourselves,”You know what? Wasn’t I funny? Look at that. It felt so good.” and we have no idea of the damage that we are doing.  People who constantly criticise others are often deceived and do not realise the damage that they are doing. We need to speak words of life,words that build others up instead of words of criticism.

So what’s got to change in us? We need to learn to speak words of life – words that are uplifting and encouraging. And the only way we can speak words of life is through the empowering of the Holy Spirit. We need to allow the Holy Spirit to teach us and empower us to speak words of life. When we do this the words that we begin to speak are not going to be words of criticism but words of life.

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