Loving People to Life with Honesty
Honest words can be hard to hear. Painful at times. Depending on how they are spoken to us, they cause us to usually do one of two things: become angry and ignore them or become thankful and reflect on any truth in them.
When we are angry immediately, it is possible to miss a growth opportunity in a relationship or a skill. We may also miss a growth opportunity in our relationship with God or an opportunity to be transformed by God’s Truth.
If we are thankful, we can guide ourselves toward reflection and evaluate if there is any truth in the criticism given to us.
Likewise, if we are offering criticisms, they must be done in a quiet spirit with the pure intention of loving someone back to life. If we find ourselves between a rock and a hard place of believing we are called to critique or criticize, always pray first for God to give the green light. If the criticism is not biblical or does not help in some way, is it even appropriate to give it or does it just make us feel better? Even if we are in relationship with the other person, it is respectful to ask permission to speak truth into someone’s life.
Job’s friends had told themselves a story about Job and believed it. What soon follows is a criticism campaign based on lies. In the end, it turns out God proves their perceived story wrong. We must be careful to love people to life with honesty.
“Teach me, and I will keep quiet.
Show me what I have done wrong.
Honest words can be painful,
but what do your criticisms amount to? (Job 6:24-25)”