Whether you are confronting a friend in love or examining your own life, which God tells us to do first by the way, here are 3 things that you need to do to conquer criticism.
1. ADMIT THAT IT IS A PROBLEM. The Bible says "Do everything without complaining and arguing." How do you do that? Admit it is a problem for you or for your friend. Proverbs 28:13 "A man who refuses to admit his mistakes can never be successful. But if he confesses and forsakes them, he gets another chance." If you are the critical person, confess your sin to God. If your friend is the critic, pray for them and don't engage in conversations with them that are critical of self or others.
2.ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY FOR MY OWN LIFE.
Many times complaining is just an attempt to blame other people for the problems I've created. Or excuse myself and put the focus on somebody else. I brought the problem into my life, I'm the cause of it, but if I complain or criticize maybe I can shift the focus onto somebody else and it will make me feel just a little bit better. We like to pass the buck and it makes us feel better. Proverbs 19:3 "Some people ruin themselves by their own stupid mistakes and then blame the Lord." Whether it is you or you friend that deals with this issue, the critical person must accept responsibility and not play the blame game.
3. DEVELOP THE ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE
I Thes. 5:18 "Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." God says "I want you to be thankful in all circumstances." It does not say "for all circumstances". You cannot always be thankful for the circumstances, but you can be thankful in the situation. I know that God is working all things for good. God's purpose for my life is greater than my problems, so in everything I can give thanks. Not for my problems, but in the midst of them. Don't allow yourself to grow bitter but allow each struggle to make you better.
Join us this weekend as I share the steps that you must take in dealing with critical people. If you can't make it you can listen to it on our podcast via our website.