Do you have a critical heart? I do. I’m ashamed to admit it but I’m afraid it is true. I am constantly judging others and thinking of ways that things could be done better. Now part of that is in my gifting from the Lord. I can analyze a situation and find ways to improve production and see places that will cause problems if not corrected. That’s all well when it is my job to analyze and criticize. But sadly it bleeds into other areas of my life as well.
I find that I can’t stop myself from judging – God help me. I sit in a village church service and start finding fault in this and that. I have to really focus in order to worship and learn without being critical.
The disciple is not above his master, but everyone who is perfect shall be like his master. And why do you look at the splinter that is in your brother’s eye, but do not see the beam that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, Brother, let me pull out the splinter in your eye, when you yourself do not see the beam that is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First cast out the beam out of your own eye, and then you shall see clearly to pull out the splinter that is in your brother’s eye. Luke 6:40-42
When I really think about it, it has another name—PRIDE. I see fault in others and the way they do things because a part of me sees myself or my way as better.
He who is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone at her. John 8:7
This is a tough lesson to learn. Even harder to work on, but that is part of the Christian life. I need to change constantly to become more and more like my Saviour.
Another aspect of this critical heart comes in the form of Gossip. How easy it is to criticize others in my heart and even easier to criticize something in front of others. I tell my friends that I didn’t like how this and this was done. I think so-n-so should have done this not that. It doesn’t take long for an entire village to be criticizing someone. Sometimes they have really sinned but why is it so easy to gossip about the sins of others?
When you talk with your friends, how much of the conversation is about others? How much of the conversation is negative and about things that you don’t like in your life or in others? How much of the conversation is seeking someone else to join you in your criticism, or pity party? How much is that conversation about getting them to take your side, to see and agree on your point of view?
Finally, my brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are honest, whatever things are right, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report; if there is any virtue and if there is any praise, think on these things. Philippians 4:8
I’m wanting to work on this critical heart of mine. I’m wanting to work on my gossiping nature. Lord help me.