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Updated: Mar 4, 2022

Critics are those that express deep feelings towards another, their ideas, or walk of life. Critics always have an opinion of something even when they have not been asked for an opinion.

"And they watched him, whether he would heal him on the Sabbath day; that they might accuse him. And he saith unto the man which had the withered hand, Stand forth. "

- Mark 3:3

"If I care to listen to every criticism, let alone act on them, then this shop may as well be closed for all other businesses. I have learned to do my best, and if the end result is good, then I do not care for any criticism, but if the end result is not good, then even the praise of ten angels would not make the difference."

- Abraham Lincoln

Therefore, the important thing when receiving criticism is how we react to it.

1. Check your mindset.

2. Are you trying to please the person?

3. Do you know the person, trust the person, and understand that the person is trying to motivate you? Strangers can also give you great tips.

4. Are they trying to build you or tare you down?

5. Are they direct or indirect?

6. Does the criticism help you grow and motivate you to be a better person?

Just like the Scribes and Pharisees (critics) waited to see if Jesus would heal the man with the withered hand. Critics are waiting to prove that their unwanted input will be suitable for your life. Jesus met the man in the synagogue on the Sabbath day and healed him anyway. The man had one imperfection, but his imperfection became his blessing. He was able to see the miracle-working power of the Holy Spirit through Jesus and the love of the Father. This man had faith, and he believed that he could have better and that he could be healed, and therefore, he was.

There is a quote that I have grown to like, "If there is truth or merit in the criticism, try to learn from it. Otherwise, let it roll right off you." - Hillary Rodham Clinton Often, we have a quick, emotional reaction to much-needed or unwanted feedback, which worsens the situation. I have been there! I had to learn to take a deep breath, hear the person out, think before speaking and if it's incorrect feedback, tell that individual thank you and keep it moving. I encourage you to pause for a minute and think if there's anything you can learn from what's being said and if not, say thank you and don't take it to heart, and don't give it another thought. If there is some importance to what's being said, try applying the feedback, and use it to your advantage.

We should be, like Jesus, doing good unto all no matter their walk of life, the stage of life one is in, or another's opinion. Do as the man with the withered hand, trust and believe even with whatever imperfections you have, might think you have, know that you are blessed, you are love, and you are you. Only you can change yourself and achieve the goals you've set in place to reach. "If at first, you don't succeed. Try, try, again"!

Reflect: What have critics said about you, and how will you push forth to prove to yourself that you are an achiever and you will be you no matter what stage of life you are in?

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