Glass is a hard substance composed of sand, soda, lime, and other ingredients fused through rapid cooling. When it is smashed, the dangers in the bits of splintered broken glass remind me of the bitter criticism being tossed about every day.
If you swap the damage that shards of glass can cause to the body for the words that many people sling, you may notice the impact can be as cutting and lethal. Fault-finding against others has become as comfortable as an old pair of shoes or a worn blanket. Its ceaseless flow is like running a gauntlet of cruel punishment. You cannot escape being wounded.
Criticism covers many areas—the list is infinite. It can run the scale from focusing on a person's facial features and appearance, to clothes, gender, race, culture, or religion. It includes our government, word usage, speech, competency, or intellect. You name it!
Bible history records criticism as a crime. When you speak against someone or speak words that are hurtful to the reputation of the person, it is condemned as "evil speaking." (Colossians 3:8; Jude 10) Several events in the Bible cost the grumblers their lives.
One of the topmost areas of criticism regards the Bible and the church. Many say the Bible is too complicated to understand. Some declare that the various accounts of the same events by different writers, adds to their confusion and disbelief.
Then there are statements about which church to attend. An undisputable claim is that there are so many denominations. This provokes the question on how to commit to attend one regularly? Finally, there is the worn-out statement trotted out for years, that “the church is filled with a bunch of hypocrites.”
If you have ever visited a hospital, you recognize it is a place that is occupied by people with various illnesses, wounds, and distresses. Although there are many medical specialists who help treat countless anomalies, the mission of the hospital staff is the same: restore the patient to health.
As much as we would like to believe we were born into this three-dimensional world as perfect individuals, it doesn't take long for our bubble to burst once it becomes obvious that is not the case. Although it may seem unfair, the truth is we came as damaged goods with a flaw in our spirits. God's original creations made a deadly choice, and the aftermath of their decision was transmitted to all of their future offspring. (Genesis 2:17; 3:6-7,16,17.)
The church is a spiritual health facility to dispense abiding, eternal love and leads to God's gift of forgiveness that can restore His creations to spiritual health. (Matthew 9:12; Mark 2:17) Seek out a church that actively expresses His gifts. When you commit to attending, you will have ample opportunities to read and study the Bible with others to increase your understanding of God's Word.
If you select at-home Bible reading, sincerely ask God for Divine wisdom. I guarantee you will receive an answer. You won't be disappointed.
Criticizing and fault-finding expose an unhealthy personality temperament. Frustration, helplessness, or anger may be at the root of grumbling. Remember, criticizing another is like criticizing yourself. Turn those thorny areas over to God and let Him show you how to prepare a message that will reach the heart of another.