Proverbs 19:20 Listen to advice and accept correction, and in the end you will be wise.
Sometimes I wonder when we got so sensitive? When did constructive criticism become labeled as bashing? When did correction become negativity? And conviction become judgment?
We live in the mindset of
“If it hurts, then I don’t have to listen” or
“It isn’t what I want to hear so it can’t possibly be good for me.”
We’re somehow not allowed to tell each other that our sin pattern is the reason we remain in compromised situations because of “judgment”. Maybe, you shouldn’t tell me that my writing could use some improvement because it’s “too harsh”.
But what if it is TRUE?
We have somehow got it all backwards. We think the ones that love us are the ones that never have anything tough to say. But..
Real love challenges.
Real love doesn’t let us settle.
Real love serves as a heart-checker.
Proverbs 27:17 As iron sharpens iron,
so one person sharpens another.
Sharpening is the process of grinding away the material by use of another substance that is abrasive and harder than what is being sharpened. In this process, both tools become sharper and are able to function more efficiently.
The friction may not feel good. It can feel abrasive and be tough to hear. But it is the ONLY way we become better. Isn’t that the goal? To grow up in Christ(Ephesians 4:15) and be more like Him(1 Corinthians 11:1)?
What good comes from us staying the same?
So my prayer for us is this:
I pray we would be quick to listen (James 1:19) and slow to defend. I pray we would have moldable hearts and discerning spirits. I pray that we resist our tendencies to be offended by correction and embrace the wisdom being sown into us. (Proverbs 12:15) I pray that we would remember that just because we don’t like what we are hearing doesn’t mean it isn’t true. I pray we wouldn’t stop at discomfort when the truth comes but move past it into freedom. I pray that we would desire to grow up in Christ and look more and more like Him. I pray that we would leave our childish ways behind us and embrace Christ like ways of living. (Proverbs 9:16) I pray that we would have teachable hearts. That we would not limit what can be poured into us because we don’t want to feel bad about ourselves. I pray that we would embrace the hard conversations with grace. I pray that we would welcome reproof and conviction humbly. I pray that we would lay down our pride and our need to be right for the sake of looking more like Christ. I pray that we would have discerning hearts to know when someone who has our best interest at heart is speaking into us. Lastly, I pray that we would have the desire to grow, to not settle for staying the same. I pray that we would always be searching of more of Jesus.
We are all in this together.
Ephesians 5:15 No, we will speak the truth with love. We will grow to be like Christ in every way. He is the head,
Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
Proverbs 3:7 Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil.
James 1:5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it WILL be given to you.