Saturday, March 21, 2009

Shed that thick suit of skin

It's about time for "reverse feedback" at the office. This is where folks get to submit anonymous comments about me to my boss. Then my boss sits down with me and goes over the comments before I get to see them--sounds fun, huh? Reading the report last year made me squirm. No one likes a critic, especially a group of anonymous ones.

Yet criticism has even more withering power when it comes from loved ones in your family and church. Conventional thinking says to grow your skin thick and don't let the gripes get you down. But I found an article that presents a much better way. (HT: JT)

To take criticism well see yourself as God sees you—a sinner. The cross has criticized and judged you more intensely, deeply, pervasively, and truly than anyone else ever could. This knowledge permits you to say to all other criticism: "This is just a fraction of it."

But the cross of Christ also reminds you that God has thoroughly and forever accepted you in Christ. The whole world can stand against you, denounce you, or criticize you, and you will be able to reply, "If God has justified me, who can condemn me?" "If God justifies me, accepts me, and will never forsake me, then why should I feel insecure and fear criticism?"

I ought not to fear man's criticism for I have already agreed with God's criticism. And I do not look ultimately for man's approval for I have gained by grace God's approval. In fact, His love for me helps me to hear correction and criticism as a kindness, oil on my head, from my Father who loves me.

Read the whole thing.

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