Summary: If you’re an effective leader at work or school. If you’re effective in what you do at church. If you’re effective in making something better - whenever you become you rise above the normal - you become at target criticism. And if you do not learn to sha

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How do we handle critical people?

How many of you know someone who is very critical?

All of us will deal with people who are critical. (Give Life example)

Repeat after me, “I will be criticized”

Moses was criticized for marrying a Midianite

Criticized for leading out of slavery

Paul was said he was not a good teacher

Jesus was criticized for hanging out with tax collectors, healing on the Sabbath


It is better to be criticized by a wise person than to be praised by a fool! -- Ecclesiastes 7:5

Praise – often reveals what you value most. (have Adam give example) Adam values most about my compliment.

Criticism – often reveals your deepest insecurities. (have Cindy criticize him) Criticize dress code.

Hold log up to eye and repeat: “Maybe that’s why Jesus said:

How can you think of saying, ’Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye?” Matt 7:4

Let those phrases sink in:

Praise – often reveals what you value most.

Criticism – often reveals your deepest insecurities.

Why is it that people can be so critical?

The truth is, most of the time those who are most critical, are the ones that really don’t like themselves.

And they’ll criticize you, because it helps validate or approve of them—helps them to feel more important or more special.

The reality is that critical people are most often the ones inwardly who are most miserable.

So…how do we deal with critical people?

Sadly for some of you, you grew up with critical parents, and no matter what you did, you just couldn’t live up to their standards.

You tried and tried and tried, but could just never seem to do it.

That has affected you deeply.

Some of you may be in a relationship with another person where most of your converstation is characterized by being critical.

You’re never good enough, you’re not this, why can’t you do this, why can’t you be like this…

Could be at work, or friends who criticize you, and Christians, unfortunately, can be the most critical of other Christ followers.

How Do We Deal With Criticism?


1) FIGHT We often want to fight back. Your heart beats faster, your blood pressure rises… I’ll walk off from the conversation

2) FLIGHT we withdraw, so we keep them at a distance…to kept from being hurt.


1. LISTEN to constructive criticism

When their motive is to help not hurt. (struggling with your weight and they come up to you and offer you a way to help you lose weight as opposed to someone who says you better not eat another oreo cookie…

When the person can help.

If you listen to constructive criticism, you will be at home among the wise. If you reject criticism, you only harm yourself…

Prov. 15:31-32

So many people aren’t maxing out, because they aren’t learning from constructive criticism…

2. A Time to ANSWER their criticism

When do we answer?

When the person is missing information that would change his or her perception. (hey, here’s something you didn’t know)

When the person is open to change. (some people no matter what you say, are still going to be critical) (some people criticize for a hobby, --don’t waste your time with these people)

If you let your spiritual enemy in, it becomes a BASH Fest,

Let’s look at someone in the Bible who answered...

The Ephraimites asked Gideon, ‘Why have you treated us like this?

"And they criticized him sharply". But he answered them…

Judges 8:1-2a

- He built them up with encouragement

- When they heard his answer, they were no longer angry

- He diffused the anger by answering the critique

The third thing is so vitally important, and that is to

3. DISMISS invalid criticism

When do we dismiss invalid criticism?

When the person is characterized by being overly critical.

(I don’t like my job, my boss, my parents, weathers not good, nothing good on TV, Napolean Dynamite is just a dumb movie, why do people like it?)

When someone cannot see anything good in life, they’re not going to see anything good in you—we learn to dismiss it and not let it distract us.

When the person is emotionally unhealthy or wounded.

We do not dismiss the person, we have to understand that “hurt people” hurt people—and they criticize you.

If your family life is blessed, and everything is going good for you, you will be criticized because theirs is not.

Hurting people hurt people.

You just happen to be an easy target.

A great example is: Jesus replied, ’Every plant not planted by my heavenly Father will be rooted up, so ignore them. They are blind guides leading the blind...they will both fall into a ditch.’ NLT -- Matthew 15:13-14

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