Summary: Here is a sermon encouraging the listener on how to conquer criticism.
Tonight I would like to speak a message entitled "Conquering Criticism"
In reality, you and I don't like criticism. Criticism can be crippling and the fear of being criticized can be catastrophic.
Criticism can prevent you and I from taking risks that lead to greatness - Criticism can also hinder us from reaching your full potential if we do not handle it right.
Everyone experiences criticism – and our ability to handle criticism oftentimes “makes us” or “breaks us” in life. We can either allow criticism to inspire us or immobilize us.
Everyone who decides to step out and do something for God will be criticized that's just the way it is.
Quote: If you are a Christian...
If you are a Christian, you can expect folks to criticize you, but you ought to live so nobody will believe them.
Ok lets take a look at a few things about criticism and then we will be done.
1- The cause of Criticism
What is the cause of Criticism?
We need to understand something. The cause of criticism to a person is not because the one being criticized is a bad person. The criticism Nehemiah received was not directed at him, it was directed at what he was doing.
Nehemiah just happened to be the one to step out and do something about the walls being burned down.
So it wasn't because Nehemiah was a bad person and people didn't like him, No it was because he chose to do something about the situation.
It could've have been anybody and they would have gotten criticized.
You and I must remember, that when ever we step out to do something for God, when someone comes against you, they are not coming against you because they don't like you and you are a bad person, but they are coming against you because of what you have decided to do.
Most of the time, it is not who you are that people criticize, it is what you do.
They are not coming against you as a person, but they are coming against what you represent.
They are coming against your courage, they are coming against your boldness, and they are coming against your radicalness.
Why? Well maybe because they know they should be stepping out and doing something, but somehow they have let critics steal their boldness, radicalness, or courage. So they come against the ones who have it...
Let the man who says it cannot be done not disturb the man doing it.
See their goal is to pull you down. Because if they pull you down they don't have to deal with the conviction they get by seeing you stepping out and doing it - why, because they got you to stop.
Look at Eliab Davids brother.
He came against David not because David was a bad person, but because David made him look bad.
Eliab knew he should have been bold enough to fight the giant, but since he was scared and didn't have heart, He came against the one who did.
Why did he come against him? Well like I said earlier- if he can discourage David from stepping out, He will no longer have to deal with the conviction David brought to him by stpepping out - when he know he should have doing it.
Fault finding is not difficult. Isaac Murray illustrates this in his story on how a dog hitched to a lawn mower stopped pulling to bark at a passerby. The boy who was guiding the mower said, "Don't mind the dog, he is just barking for an excuse to rest. It is easier to bark than to pull the mower."
So remember one of the reasons why people criticize you, is because you are convicting them by your actions.
So rather than respond to the convictions and get on track, they try to pull you down and make you stop.
They are not made at you - they are mad at what you represent.
* Side note - have you ever been mad or hated on someone that you haven't ever talked to before?
Have you ever been mad at someone you haven't ever met, but just because of the way they walked into the room you didn't like them..., or just because the way they sang that song you didn't like them..., or just the way they dressed you didn't like them, or just because the way they testified you didn't like them....why not?
It isn't because you think they are a bad person you haven't ever met them, why because maybe they represented something you didn't have.
Such as - Boldness - Self Confidence - Self Esteem - Radicalness -
So don't take it personal if someone hates on you, its probably you represent something they don't have...