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Leap of Faith MinistriesClarksville, TN – One of the most subtle sins that always entangles us is an attitude of criticism. It causes more unhappiness than all the physical diseases put together. It breaks up marriages, chases children away from home, and splits groups.

People become physically ill because they have been so wounded in their souls by constant fault finding. Some withdraw into mental illness; others commit crimes or turn to alcohol, drugs, and over eating, or become social misfits or chronic failures because they have been told over and over again that everything they do is wrong.

We all know a critical remark can spoil our entire day, yet those who make the criticisms usually feel like they are right to do it. We tell ourselves, we criticize only because we want to tell the truth and be helpful. Jesus said, “…He who is without sin among you let him throw a stone at her first.” (John 8:7 NKJV) Negative, critical, fault, finding words can destroy someone as effectively as throwing stones.

Criticism is dangerous to those who practice it. Jesus said, “Don’t criticize people, and you won’t be criticized. For you will be judged by the way you criticize others, and the measure you give will be the measure you receive.” (Matthew 7:1-2) Other people’s sin is like the speck of sawdust and our critical attitude is the plank. The more we talk or think about other people’s faults or failures and try to set them straight, the more we become guilty ourselves. Only by allowing God to remove our plank, do we become fit to help our brother with his little speck. The goal is to get rid of both the plank and the speck, but in that order.

Admitting our critical attitude is the first step, but that isn’t easy. We tend to think of others as needing God’s forgiveness more than we do; a sure sign the plank of criticism protrudes from our eye. When we’re dealing with family or close friends we often hide our critical thoughts behind flattering words. “They speak idly, everyone with his neighbor; with flattering lips and a double heart they speak.” (Psalm 12:2 NKJV) Going back to the screen analogy image everyone you speak to can see what you think about them projected on a screen over your head. That would quickly unmask our critical attitude, wouldn’t it?

The home is the place where most of the damage of criticism takes place by ugly words and attitudes expressed between family members. People always complain about what is wrong with other members of their household. God wants to heal our families, He can start with us if we are willing to stop criticizing and start being thankful for our family the way it is.

Our critical attitude must be seen as the horrible sin it really is. We must ask God to forgive us and surrender our thoughts to Him. He can fill us with love for those of whom we have been critical. Then when a fault finding thought comes into our head we must refuse to hang on to it and instead follow Paul’s advice “…dwell on the fine, good things in others.” (Philippians 4:8)

Once we start thinking about the good points in others, it is surprising how soon we begin to admire them and appreciate them and thank God for them exactly as they are. Soon their faults won’t look half as bad as they once seemed. With our attitudes changed God can reach down and remove any little speck that may still remain in our brother’s eye as well.

Created To Believe: The Power of Praise Through Practical Biblical Truths

Excerpt from Created To Believe: The Power of Praise Through Practical Biblical Truths written by Richard “Reason” Garrett

Copyright © 2011 Liberated Publishing Inc

About Richard Garrett




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