The Power of Words - Constructive or Just Critical?

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Scripture(s)

Proverbs 12:18; Ephesians 4:15; Ephesians 4:29-30; Philippians 4:8; Romans 15:13 

Reflection Questions

1.   Read Proverbs 12:18. How well do you take criticism? Are you able to discern the difference between constructive criticism and negative criticism?

2.   Read Ephesians 4:15. How well do you give criticism? Are you able to discern the difference between giving constructive criticism and negative criticism? More importantly, would those around you say that you are constructive or negative?

3.   Read Ephesians 4:29. Why do you think it is often easier to criticize than to build up and encourage? Do you think an overly-critical nature is connected to insecurities and doubts?

4.   Read Philippians 4:8. Why do you think we often struggle with people’s opinions of us over God’s opinion of us? What can we do to guard against this struggle? 

Going Further

Read Romans 15:13. From Monday through Friday, reflect on each day, and at the end of the day ask yourself if you found fault or delivered hope more often? Think about your interactions with others and answer yourself honestly. Whatever the answer may be, challenge yourself to find a way to speak more positively in your daily interactions. If you must be in situations that require constructive criticism, ask the Holy Spirit to guide your words so that they harm less and heal more.