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FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Tue, 5/7/2013

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

DAVID, FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Tue, 5/7/2013
1 Sam. 30:1-20

HOW TO HANDLE YOUR CRITICS, Lesson 16a

Criticism! No one like to receive it, but it will come anyway! Regardless of how well you live your life or try to conduct yourself in front of others, there will always be those around you who will find something to criticize.

Who can forget the life of Job? Here was a man that the Lord called "perfect and upright, and one that feared God and escheweth evil." Yet, when various calamities fell upon his life and Job's friends came to be with him, all they could find to do to Job was to criticize him. Notice what they said about this man of God, "You are a hypocrite!" (Job 5:4-5)! "You are a windbag!" (Job 8:2)! "You're just getting what you deserve!" (Job 5:8-15)! "You have a bad attitude!" (Job 5:17)! There are many more verses that could be mentioned where the friends of Job attacked and criticized this godly man. Yet, through it all, Job stuck with the Lord and never turned on God. As a result, he was restored and blessed by the Father.

Have you ever been criticized by others? Of course you have! And, you will be again! When it comes your way, you need to know how to respond to your critics so that you can have the victory.

In this passage, we find David on the run from King Saul. He has fled to the land of the Philistines and is waiting there for the Lord to deliver to him the kingdom of Israel. During this time, there arose a series of events that lead to David being criticized by his own people. In fact, verse 6 tells us that they were even talking about stoning David to death over this thing.

Today, I would like for us to look into this passage and see what brought about their criticism and how David handled himself in the face of their attack. The lessons gleaned from these verses will help us when we too find ourselves the focus of criticism. Let me speak to you for a few minutes about “How To Handle Your Critics”.

V. 1-5 THE REASON FOR THEIR CRITICISM

29:1-5 A Misguided Decision - In all reality, David probably had no business trying to help the Philistines defeat Israel. Whatever his reasoning, David was leading his troops to fight against their own people. When things turned out as they did, his men were justified in questioning David's decision.

When criticism comes your way, one of the main things you need to ask yourself is, "Is this true?" Instead of reacting defensively against your critic, try to put yourself in their shoes for a moment and try to see the issue through their eyes. It may be that they are right, at least to a degree. Give them the benefit of the doubt.

V. 1-3 A Military Defeat - When these men returned home, they found that their town had been destroyed by the Amalekites. To the minds of these men David was responsible for this event. If they had been home, instead of away, to fight in a war, they could have defended their wives, children and property. Their distress is easy to understand!

Apparently David was doing what he thought was right. However, those around him saw things a different way. We just need to remember that not everyone will agree with us all the time. There will always be those who could do it better, or who would do it differently. The critics are always close at hand!

John Wesley was deeply disturbed by people who seemed to enjoy criticizing others, especially those who were in the Lord's work. Once while he was preaching, he noticed a lady in the congregation who was well known for her critical attitude. All through the service she sat and stared at his new tie. When the meeting was ended, she came up to him and said very sharply, "Mr. Wesley, the strings on your bow tie are much too long. It's an offense to me!" He asked if any of the ladies present happened to have a pair of scissors in their purse. When they were handed to him, he gave them to the critic and asked her to trim the streamers to her liking.

After she clipped them off near the collar, he said, "Are you sure they're right now?" "Yes", she said, "that's much better!" "Then let me have those shears a moment," said Wesley. "I'm sure you wouldn't mind if I also give you a bit of correction. I don't mean to be cruel, but I must tell you, madam, that your tongue is an offense to me - it's too long! Please, stick it out, I'd like to trim some off." Of course, Wesley didn't follow through on his threat, but he sure made his point!

V. 4-5 A Monumental Discouragement - When the tragedy is discovered, the men weep until they can weep no more and needing a scapegoat, they turn on David, (v. 6). However, what they failed to realize, and the Bible points this put, David's wives were among those taken captive. They were simply concerned with themselves and refused to see the bigger picture.

Such is the way with critics! Very often, they are so caught up in themselves, how they feel, what is happening to them and how they are being affected that they cannot see things objectively. The best way to deal with this is to do what David did: Don't respond to your critic! Criticism often has the effect of injuring the critic more than the one criticized! One fellow put it this way, "If criticism has any real power to harm, the skunk would be extinct by now."

TODAY’S VERSE!
1 Corinthians 3:18 (New King James Version (NKJV)
18 Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you seems to be wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise.


TODAY’S HYMN!
“I Want To Be Ready To Meet Him” By: Adger M. Pace (1938)

You may have your worldly pleasures
Your silver and your gold,
You may pile up all the riches
That this old world can hold;
But I’d rather have my Savior
And with Him firmly stand
For I want to be ready to meet Him
In the glory land

Chorus
I want (I want to be) to be ready (ready)
To meet Him by and by.
I want (I want to be) to be ready (ready)
To meet Him in the sky.
Oh, I want to be more like him,
And do his best command,
For I want to be ready to meet Him
In the glory land.

You may talk about your riches, your diamonds and your pearls, You may gain the wealth of ages of this and all the world, But the Savior is more precious, with Him I’ll take my stand, For I want to be ready to meet Him in the glory land.
Chorus


There is one thing I can boast of,
Salvation from the fall,
I’m an heir to wealth in glory,
My Father owns it all;
That is why I’m shouting happy
And go at His command
For I want to be ready to meet Him
In the glory land

Chorus

TODAY’S PRAYER!

Heavenly Father, God of Glory and Grace! Open our eyes and hearts that we may see the truth about our situation. Grant us clear understanding when we are faced by our critics. Give us a clear vision of how You want us to respond towards our critics. Enable us to trust Your hand of protection as we lower our defensive shields, and see and understand the situation from their perspective. Enlarge our hearts so we can receive Your instructions and apply it in a way that will glorify You. Pour out Your blessings on all till each soul is filled with Your love and grace. This is our prayer today that we bring before Your throne of grace in Jesus’ name. Amen!

BE SURE TO READ MY DAILY “DID YOU KNOW” POST!
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MZLADY77 5/8/2013 5:52AM

    Thanks again for sharing! God bless you! emoticon

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ANHELIC 5/7/2013 11:01PM

    Thank you Vic for another great lesson, hymn and prayer. Yes, I have often felt offended about what someone had said about me, especially when it was not the truth. A friend of mine made a joke of it and said, if they are criticizing you, they are leaving someone else alone. How true. I prayed about this and now with the help of Holy Spirit, I accept criticizm and am not offended. I just want to please our Lord. Thank you for the goodie and note. Blessings for your continued teachings.

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TONYVAND1 5/7/2013 4:47PM

  Responding in clarity to my situation through Christ.

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QTEALADY20031 5/7/2013 3:06PM

    Vic emoticon . Many times we must put ourselves in the shoes of the other person before we open our mouth and criticize. Criticism is not easy to take but yes we do need to ask ourself if what they are saying is true and then perhaps try to rectify.
In other situations there are people who are not happy with themselves and enjoy criticizing others. Thank goodness God hears and knows what is in our heart! emoticon

Comment edited on: 5/7/2013 3:07:12 PM

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JOANIE69 5/7/2013 12:52PM

    I too can relate. I was easily offended when young and a new Christian, but the Holy Spirit would suggest to me that just MAYBE they meant what they said in a different way than how I had taken it. It was foreign to my own way of thinking to reflect on these opposite possibilities, for if I'd said the same thing to someone, (and usually never would), I would have been criticising them soundly. Thus I know these thoughts were from the Spirit, teaching me that not everybody thinks the way that I do...LOL. And thus too I learned not to be easily offended, but to consider what I took as criticism, and ponder if there may be some other meaning to their words, and if not, then did I deserve that criticism? I can now benefit from constructive criticism. Isn't it marvelous how the Holy Spirit leads us along, step by step changing us into the new creatures we started to be, when we first received Christ? Oh to be more like Him every day of my life...steadily moving forward with my eyes fixed on my Lord God! That is glory. His glory.

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LOSTLIME 5/7/2013 11:57AM

    This was great! It is always better to put yourself in someone else's shoes before saying
something that can hurt or you can't take back. Thank you,Vic.

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IAM_HIS 5/7/2013 11:33AM

    Wow, another one that meant so much to me..thank you!!

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WARRIORFIT1 5/7/2013 10:16AM

    Wonderful, Vic! emoticon

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NELLIEH1 5/7/2013 8:34AM

    Yes, Father, may I have eyes to see and ears to ear You. And Lord, as You work, please keep plowing up my heart that the words I speak may come from a heart that understands.

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RSSSLHB 5/7/2013 8:26AM

    emoticon

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LOOKINGUP2012 5/7/2013 7:54AM

    Yes, Father, open my eyes so I can see situations clearly. Give me understanding and help me lower my defenses. In Jesus name,

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AZMOMXTWO 5/7/2013 7:34AM

  thank you

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