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You don’t mean to be this way…but as you see things that go wrong or have thoughts that come up, you voice them. Slowly but surely, before you even recognize what’s going on, it becomes a pattern + your mind enters a situation first pointing out the wrong before it ever acknowledges the right.
You don’t want to be this kind of person who seems perpetually frustrated, harsh, or sterile but suddenly, there you are.
Especially with those closest to you, it’s easy to focus on what’s annoying, ineffective, or what could be improved. However—notice the feeling it creates when it’s just negative communication, even if it’s right!!! Nobody wins.
Being “right” has never been the caliber for whether something should be voiced or repeated.
What is your motivation behind your interaction? Will it help that person see the Jesus in themselves? Will it call them to look up, choose purpose, + trust His promises for them?
Because you see, when the motivation is pure, it is possible to voice complaints + deal head-on with tough issues because the vehicle for your delivery is grace. Your tone becomes gentler, your eyes look into their soul rather than at everything they’re messing up around you, + your goal is unity in the Spirit—this is felt by all.
It would seem like criticism would be a more effective method for change because how else would they know it keeps happening, that you still feel affected by their behavior, or that their decisions are harmful?
But it is actually grace that others feel, experience, and yearn to respond to that changes the game.
Wasn’t it that way with Jesus?
Who would we be if He “extended grace” but spent His time reiterating how He wished we would be or the weaknesses we can’t seem to fix?
The shame would suffocate us + the power to create new patterns would dissipate beneath the surface.
You and others will always benefit from calling out their identity in Christ. Strength responds to strength. It is not weak of you to let something go if possible; it is strength to give it to Jesus, return to prayer, + speak life still.
Protect yourself against a critical spirit— be unusually kind + trust the Holy Spirit to do His job.