Just some thoughts. Believe me I don’t claim to have any of it figured out…at all…and this is directed at no one. If it speaks to you good. If it doesn’t just as good. I do in my blog what I have always done since I was very young – just write what is on my heart without too much censorship…as a way of processing and it is my hope that when I look back at it all in a year, I will have changed for the better in some way.
Praise and Criticism
It’s great to have a few people in your life that believe in you and that can give sincere praise and honest critique. I have learned to value criticism and am rarely offended by it, if it is constructive – serves the purpose of making me better in some way or correcting a wrong that I have overlooked by negligence or even choice. We grow by both critique and praise but too much of either can be detrimental. Both have to be tempered with true LOVE.
So I wonder…
If someone constantly praises you, does it show their level of relationship with you? Do they really even know you or do they just like who they think you are or more who they think you are to them…like an idol of sorts? When they see a fault, will they still praise what is good in you or will the fault overshadow and topple everything they have seemingly built you up to be? Once toppled will you be as rubbish to them? I don’t know, just a thought I had this morning.
And I wonder also if someone constantly corrects your actions and beliefs, your words and things like the way you dress or what you love to surround yourself with in your own home or environment (as long as it is not unholy) is that constructive critique at all? Do they really believe in you or are they hoping to recreate you into the image of who they want you to be? Again idolatry perhaps?!?
I want to be recreated into another’s image…but only in the image of JESUS! I do want others to be recreated in His image as well. While we are to be there to help each other and build each other up and admonish each other – ultimately someone’s recreation is not my job. It is between them and the Lord and so it is His job!!!
Temper it all in LOVE!!!! When I need to go over a good definition of love, I look at 1 Corinthians 13 (I like it especially in the Amplified).
Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer. ~ Psalm 19:14
Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins. ~ Proverbs 10:12
And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins. ~ 1 Peter 4:8
Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do. And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; And to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake. And be at peace among yourselves. ~ 1 Thessalonians 5:11-13
For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. ~ Romans 8:29
If I [can] speak in the tongues of men and [even] of angels, but have not love (that reasoning, intentional, spiritual devotion such as is inspired by God’s love for and in us), I am only a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have prophetic powers (the gift of interpreting the divine will and purpose), and understand all the secret truths and mysteries and possess all knowledge, and if I have [sufficient] faith so that I can remove mountains, but have not love (God’s love in me) I am nothing (a useless nobody). 3 Even if I dole out all that I have [to the poor in providing] food, and if I surrender my body to be burned or in order that I may glory, but have not love (God’s love in me), I gain nothing. 4 Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. 5 It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong]. 6 It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. 7 Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. 8 Love never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end]. As for prophecy (the gift of interpreting the divine will and purpose), it will be fulfilled and pass away; as for tongues, they will be destroyed and cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away [it will lose its value and be superseded by truth]. 9 For our knowledge is fragmentary (incomplete and imperfect), and our prophecy (our teaching) is fragmentary (incomplete and imperfect).
10 But when the complete and perfect (total) comes, the incomplete and imperfect will vanish away (become antiquated, void, and superseded).
11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; now that I have become a man, I am done with childish ways and have put them aside. 12 For now we are looking in a mirror that gives only a dim (blurred) reflection [of reality as in a riddle or enigma], but then [when perfection comes] we shall see in reality and face to face! Now I know in part (imperfectly), but then I shall know and understand fully and clearly, even in the same manner as I have been fully and clearly known and understood [by God]. 13 And so faith, hope, love abide [faith—conviction and belief respecting man’s relation to God and divine things; hope—joyful and confident expectation of eternal salvation; love—true affection for God and man, growing out of God’s love for and in us], these three; but the greatest of these is love. ~ 1 Corinthians 13 (Amplified)