Be ?Quick To Hear? – 15 Things To Recall Next Time You’re Criticized

?megaphone

Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. (James 1:19-20)

Are ?you “quick to hear”? ?Though this verse can be applied to many situations, I?m going to apply it to times when others criticize, point out a sin, failure or weakness in us. We should be quick to hear when others reprove us in love (or not in love).

Why are we often slow to hear? We can be slow to hear because we are proud. Because we think we are right, or that we have the most accurate assessment of ourselves. Another reason we can be slow to hear can be because we view others? corrections as attacks on us.

Another reason we can be slow to hear is because, even though we?re saved, we have an inadequate view of our ongoing battle with sin. Though believers are no longer ?in sin? or slaves of sin, we still must put it to death on a regular basis. We need to be constantly aware of the temptation to be prideful or unteachable.

We may also be slow to listen when we have an inadequate view of how God accepts us in Christ. Insecure, we can always be looking to people for a sense of acceptance. We can interpret people?s correction as a lack of acceptance. But when we come to realize that God accepts us and is pleased with us in Christ, we can then receive criticism, for we are secure in knowing that nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus, and that he accepts us completely.

Sometimes we?re slow to hear because we have prejudged someone. We assume we know their motives. We assume we know why they are bringing something to us and we write it off.

So how can we become more quick to hear? Next time someone corrects, criticizes or points out a failure or sin to you:

  • View correction as a good thing: Ps 141:5 says: ?Let a righteous man strike me?it is a kindness; let him rebuke me?it is oil for my head; let my head not refuse it.? That?s how we should view the correction of a believer – as a blessing.
  • Remember the danger of being wise in your own eyes. As Pr 26:12 says, ?Do you see a man who is wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.?
  • Consider that it may be really hard for this person to bring a negative comment to you – try to make it easy for them. Consider that if they didn?t love you they might not say anything.
  • Determine that you really want to hear and understand their concern, even if it hurts, or even if in the end you don?t agree.
  • Remind yourself that God gives grace to the humble, but resists the proud. You don?t want God resisting you.
  • Remember we all have blind spots. We all have logs in our eyes at times. We can?t know ourselves perfectly and can?t see ourselves as others see us. Maybe this is something we?re blind to.
  • Don?t be quick to defend yourself. God is perfectly able to defend you.
  • Don?t be formulating your rebuff while the other person is still speaking.
  • Ask questions. Draw them out. Seek clarification. Depending on the situation, take notes.
  • Don?t write off their concern because they don?t deliver it perfectly. Even if they share in anger, the content could still be accurate.
  • Even if most of what they share is inaccurate, there’s usually at least a grain of truth worth looking for in any criticism.
  • Believe God can and will speak to you through others to sanctify you.
  • If you don?t see it, tell them you really want to and that you will definitely consider it and pray about it.
  • Thank them for bringing this to you.
  • Ask them to point it out again any time they see you do it in the future.

If we are humble and are quick to hear, God will give us grace and we’ll grow. ?If we’re proud and quick to reject correction, God may have to humble us. ?I don’t know about you, but I’d rather humble myself than have God have to do it.

Illustration by Bill Shapard

I Want To Be The Biblical Version of Joel Osteen

osteen_final_rect

Joel Osteen has acquired a bad reputation in some circles. He is known for teaching a prosperity gospel, for avoiding the wrath of God, and for being squishy on key subjects, like homosexuality. Nevertheless, there is one aspect of Joel Osteen’s ministry that I want to emulate: his constant emphasis on encouragement.

Life is really, really hard. Parents grow old, kids get sick, friends get cancer, sons get addicted to drugs, and daughters get pregnant out of wedlock. Our bodies get older and weaker and fatter. We struggle to raise our kids in an increasingly post-modern world. We are constantly aware of our shortcomings as Christians. We need to pray more, read our Bibles more, and evangelize more. We need to do better, try harder, be more productive, get more done. Every day we are reminded that we fall short on pretty much every account.

Because life is so hard and exhausting, every day is a battle. Every day I must fight to believe in the goodness and kindess of God. Everyday I must fight to believe that God is working all things for my good and his glory. Every day I must fight to believe that I serve a God who turns mourning into dancing. What I, and everyone else, desperately need every day, is encouragement. I need fresh hope, fresh faith, fresh strength.

There are enough critics, watch bloggers, angry prophets, protesters, and trolls in the church and in the world. We need more encouragers. We need more people like Barnabas. Acts 4:36 gives us a description of Barnabas:

Thus Joseph, who was also called by the apostles Barnabas (which means son of encouragement)…

His real name was Joseph, but the apostles called him “Barnabas”. Why? Because he was a constant encourager! Encouragement was so woven into his DNA that the apostles gave him a nickname which meant encouragement. Barnabas was constantly encouraging and building up and strengthening those around him. Encouragement oozed out of his pores.

Encouragement is a wonderful, healthy, biblical thing. Romans 15:4 ?says:

For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.

The scriptures are written for our encouragement, that we might have hope for the daily grind of life. In 1 Thessalonians 4:18, Paul told the Thessalonians to, “…encourage one another with these words.” The Thessalonians were to encourage one another with the truths about the second coming of Christ and the final resurrection of our bodies.

Paul concluded his first letter to the Thessalonians by saying, “Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.”

We need encouragement every day. There are so many times when life is hard and awful and depressing and sad. Every day I need to be reminded of the rock-solid, unshakable truths about God’s ways and works. And every day, I need to encourage others with the wonderful truths found in God’s word.

Let’s not let Joel Osteen hijack the biblical practice of encouragement. Let’s be biblical versions of Joel Osteen. Let’s be sons of encouragement, like Barnabas. Is there a place for criticism and correction? Sure. But there are enough critics out there.

Grace Frees You From Trying To Please Everybody

medium_5447958713

photo credit: eccampbell via photopin cc

The simple fact is, you will NEVER be good enough for people. No matter how hard you try, no matter how much effort you put in, you won’t be good enough to meet the expectations and desires of other people.

  • You won’t be spiritual enough.
  • Your kids won’t be respectful enough.
  • You won’t be thin enough.
  • Your preaching will be too intellectual.
  • Your preaching won’t be intellectual enough.
  • You won’t have enough kids.
  • You’ll have too many kids.
  • You won’t serve on enough comittees at church or school.
  • You’ll serve on too many committees.
  • You won’t choose the right method of schooling for your kids.
  • Your kids will eat too much junk food.
  • You won’t go on enough dates with your spouse.
  • You won’t do enough devotional times with your kids.
  • You won’t have enough of the Holy Spirit.
  • You’ll have too much of the Holy Spirit.
  • And on and on and on.

Because you are sinful and you are human, people will always have a reason to criticize and judge you. Trying to constantly meet the expactations and desires of others is exhausting and miserable and futile. The harder you try, the more miserable you’ll be. Even if you get to a place where you have the respect of everyone, you then have to stay there, which is even harder than getting there in the first place.

The gospel allows you to stop striving and fighting for the respect and acceptance of other people.

Romans 8:33-34 says:

Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died?more than that, who was raised?who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.

There is only one person who can legitimately condemn you or bring charges against you, and that is God. After all, God is the one who knows your every thought, desire, and motive. If anyone could condemn you, it is God.

But if you are in Christ, God absolutely does not condemn you or bring any charges against you! He accepts you, delights in you, treasures you, loves you, and cares for you. It doesn’t matter what others say about you. It doesn’t matter if you don’t live up to the expectations of other people. It doesn’t matter if people criticize you. You have the full, unfettered, unhinged, unqualified love of God, and that’s all you need.

You can stop trying to be everything to everybody. You can get off the exhausting treadmill of people pleasing. You can let criticisms roll off our backs. Why? Because your worth and identity and security doesn’t come from other people; it comes from God through Christ. Your security and identity is not tied to your weight, parenting style, social group, diet, family size, or anything else.

The Judge of all the earth has already given his opinion of you, and it is decidedly in your favor!

Quit Your Online Quibbling!

All truth is God?s truth. But not all truth needs to be crammed into every communication. Think about those tweets you post with clever or thoughtful quotes. Or the reflective little blog post you wrote. Or maybe it was a brief conversation with a friend at church. You shared a little bit of truth.  Inevitably, though, you get those responses with the ?well, actually. . .? or ?what you really should have said was. . .? or the always helpful ?I think what he really meant. . .? It?s the army of conscientious nuancers. They correct, edit, adjust, supplement, complete, addend, and amend. Your truth wasn?t quite true enough for their liking. Sometimes truth just needs the chance to stand by itself, even if it?s small. Just because it?s not all of the truth doesn?t make it untrue. Many of those blanks are there for a reason. Often a bite of truth is better than a year?s supply. Sometimes a taste is what whets the appetite instead of force-feeding someone a meal.  Nuance and accuracy are good. Caveats and alternatives are necessary. But just as often a single true statement set by itself is good too.  When you see them, let them be what they are. Assume the best. Take them at face value. Not all truths need to be all the truth.

All truth is God?s truth. But not all truth needs to be crammed into every communication. Think about those tweets you post with clever or thoughtful quotes. Or the reflective little blog post you wrote. Or maybe it was a brief conversation with a friend at church. You shared a little bit of truth.

Inevitably, though, you get those responses with the ?well, actually. . .? or ?what you really should have said was. . .? or the always helpful ?I think what he really meant. . .? It?s the army of conscientious nuancers. They correct, edit, adjust, supplement, complete, addend, and amend. Your truth wasn?t quite true enough for their liking.

Sometimes truth just needs the chance to stand by itself, even if it?s small. Just because it?s not all of the truth doesn?t make it untrue. Many of those blanks are there for a reason. Often a bite of truth is better than a year?s supply. Sometimes a taste is what whets the appetite instead of force-feeding someone a meal.

Nuance and accuracy are good. Caveats and alternatives are necessary. But just as often a single true statement set by itself is good too.

When you see them, let them be what they are. Assume the best. Take them at face value. Not all truths need to be all the truth.

photo credit:?Daveography.ca?via?photopin?cc

Seeing A Million Specks In A Million Eyes

log

The Internet is a wonderful tool. Thanks to the Internet we can reach people with the gospel we never would have been able to reach before. We can stay in touch with friends from college. We can listen to podcasts from our favorite preachers. We can fill our minds with wonderful, essentially free worship music (thanks Pandora). We can watch silly cat videos and try to figure out what the fox said and be encouraged that Jesus is always greater than man-made religion. We can download Bible apps and Candy Crush apps and productivity apps. The Internet is great.

But the Internet has also made it possible to be an obssessive speck detector. In Matthew 7:1-5 Jesus said:

Judge not, that you be not judged.?For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother?s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ?Let me take the speck out of your eye,? when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother?s eye.

One of our great, constant, incessant temptations is to always see the small sinful speck in someone else’s eye while ignoring the colossal sinful log in our own eye. The Internet has increased this temptation exponentially. Every time we log on to Facebook or scroll through our Twitter feed we will see a million sinful specks. Someone complaining about their job. A prominent pastor saying something we strongly disagree with. A blogger ranting and raving about the failings of the church as a whole. A friend saying making an inappropriate joke. A million people, a million specks.

When we see these specks our immediate temptation is to point out the speck. We post a long reply about why we disagree with this pastor or this blogger. We get involved in a heated digital argument with a friend about the appropriateness of their complaining. We write an open letter (why is everyone always writing open letters?) to everyone who disagrees with us. We post a string of scathing scriptures in a comment thread, all of which condemn the speck we’re seeing.

Is it always wrong or inappropriate to engage in digital disagreement? Of course not. But it seems to me that we would be wise to heed Jesus’ advice when it comes to our online behavior. Before we judge someone else we should ask the following questions:

  • Where do I see this sinful behavior in my own life? Do I need to repent first before I address their behavior?
  • Where do I see God at work in that person’s life? How can I give thanks to God for them?
  • Do I want the Lord judging me by the same standard I am judging this person?
  • Do I really need to post this correction or rebuke or open letter? Will this really accomplish anything good?
  • Is my speech giving grace to those who hear? (Ephesians 4:29)

The Internet is a wonderful tool, but it can also turn us into speck detectors. Being a speck detector is a miserable way to live. It’s no fun. To bear the weight of always trying to correct others is…well, unbearable. By God’s grace, let’s pull the digital logs out of our eyes before we point out the specks in the eyes of others.

Is Your Skin Thick or Dead?

I have thick skin. It is a blessing. I don?t know whether it is genetic or developed, nature or nurture. Likely it?s some of both. And my three older brothers deserve some thanks for their contributions to thickening it up too. Having thick skin means that I can write and publish without fearing the inevitable criticism. I can speak, converse, hold a point of view and not worry about the flak I will take for my opinions. It means I don?t take too much stuff personally so when slights or criticism come I don?t immediately turn on or draw away from the critic. Thick skin is a real benefit as a writer, an employee, and as a family man. And just as a human in a hurtful world.

It dawned on me recently, though, that skin which feels less and hurts less might not be thick; it might be dead. Thick skin protects us ? our psyches, emotions, and souls ? from injury. Dead skin protects against nothing and feels nothing. Wounds might happen with no signal and no warning. Or maybe the dead skin encases a dead soul with no feeling throughout.

Thick skin hasn?t lost its nerve endings. It feels. It just keeps the barbs from hitting vitals so healing happens more quickly. Wounds that would otherwise cause great harm are but scratches when they happen to thick skin. Dead skin feels nothing. The same barbs come. Some are small and relatively harmless. Others puncture all the way to the insides. And then the pain is excruciating, a surprise, no protection and no warning.

So I ask myself whether my skin is thick or dead. It matters because thick skin knows pain and recognizes where it is coming from. Yes, it keeps those injuries superficial but it enables me to make adjustments either to protect or better myself. It can discern between malicious hurts to salved or ignored and kind criticism to be acknowledged. Thick skin is not callous to the critics or impervious to wisdom. Thick skin is very much alive; callouses are dead.

Dead skin discerns nothing and protects against nothing. It can?t recognize wise criticism or uplifting corrections. The pain it allows is injurious, not beneficial.

Do I feel nothing? Do I ignore all feedback and criticism? Have I fooled myself into thinking my skin is thick when in fact it is dead? Or do I feel all those barbs and shots and discern whether they are helpful or harmful? Am I able to consider the source or do I not even acknowledge it?

The answer to such questions can be answered with one simple test: Is criticism making me better? Thick skin doesn?t prevent improvement; dead skin does. If your default is to ignore all critics yours might be dead. I am learning to be wary of this. Feeling nothing may seem beneficial but in the end the hurts will be greater both to you and those you pass your pain on to.

 

photo credit:?drewgstephens?via?photopin?cc

It’s So Much Easier To Criticize!

Admit it: it’s so much easier to criticize people than encourage people. There’s just so much fodder for criticism! We’re all sinners, and we regularly sin against one another. Every day we sin against our families, coworkers, friends, etc. And then there are those annoying habits we all have. Your husband can’t seem to remember to put his towel away after he takes a shower (guilty!). Your wife is a chronic key loser. Your kids are constantly breaking your valuable stuff. And the guy in the cubicle next to you is constantly clearing his sinuses in a loud, wood chipper-like, fashion. Because we are constantly interacting with frail, human, silly sinners, it’s so easy to be a constant critic.

Because it is so easy to criticize, we must take extra effort to encourage, build up, and affirm other believers (I’m preaching to myself here). We must go the extra mile to encourage and refresh others. We must work hard to overwhelm our relationships with encouragement. If our relationships become overrun with criticism they can quickly become unfruitful. In his helpful book,?Practicing Affirmation, Sam Crabtree says:

But without affirmation, well-fed, well-inoculated, well-instructed children [or friends, spouses, coworkers, etc.] may tune out their parents and their well-intended instruction?especially their instruction.

In other words, if our relationships are lacking encouragement, it doesn’t matter how much we speak the truth, it won’t be received. If our kids don’t feel our love and encouragement they probably won’t hear our biblical correction and instruction. If our spouse doesn’t hear encouragement from us the relationship will take on a sour flavor. Again, Sam Crabtree says:

Generally, new relationships are still predominately affirming, but as relationships endure the years, they also endure a lot of correction. More specifically, affirmation didn?t keep up. Not enough affirmation was dished out compared with all the other messages in the relationship. A fire not stoked goes out…Proportionality matters when it comes to affirmation, for affirmation can be choked out by criticism, correction, or mere indifference and neglect.

It’s so easy for our relationships with others to be out of proportion when it comes to criticism and encouragement. They are full of criticism and correction and very lacking in encouragement. The result is that the relationship “goes out”. The fires of friendship grow dim. The romance of marriage disappears. The kinship of the parent/child relationship vanishes.

What is the flavor of your relationships? Is it criticism or encouragement? I gravitate toward criticism. I want to be like my friend Doug, who is constantly encouraging others.

Criticism is easy. Anyone can do it. It takes special grace to be an encourager. Ask God to help you grow in being an encourager.

12 Things To Do When You’re Criticized

We will all be criticized at one time or another. Sometimes justly, sometimes unjustly. Sometimes others’ criticism of us is harsh and undeserved. Sometimes we may need it. How do we respond to criticism? I haven’t always done well and I’m still learning, but here are a few things I try to think of when others criticize me.

Be quick to hear. (James 1:19)

This can be hard to do because our emotions rise up and our minds begin to think of ways to refute the other person. ?To be quick to hear means we really do try to listen to and consider what the other person is saying. We don’t just write it off. Even if it seems unjust or undeserved.

Be slow to speak (James 1:19).

Don’t interrupt or respond too quickly. Let them finish. If you speak too quickly you might speak rashly or in anger.

Be slow to become angry.

Why? Because James 1:19-20 says the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. Anger won’t make someone do the right thing.?Remember, God is slow to anger, patient and long-suffering with those who offend him. How much more should we be.

Don’t rail back.

“When (Jesus) was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly” (1 Peter 2:23). ?Talk about being unjustly accused ? Jesus was, yet continued to trust the Lord and did not revile in return.

Give a gentle response. ?

“A soft answer turns away wrath” (Proverbs 15:1). Be gracious even to those who offend you, even as God is gracious to us when we offend him.

Don’t defend yourself too quickly.

Defensiveness can rise out of pride and being unteachable.

Consider what might be true in the critique, even if it is given in a poor way.

Even if it is given with the intent to hurt or mock, there still might be something worth considering. God might be speaking to you through this person.

Remember the Cross.

Someone has said that people won’t say anything about us that the Cross hasn’t said and more, which is, we are sinners who deserve eternal punishment. So actually, anything anyone says about us is less than what the Cross has said about us. ?Turn to God who accepts you in Christ unconditionally despite your many sins and failures. ?We can be discouraged when we see areas of sin or failure but Jesus has paid for those on the cross and God is pleased with us because of Christ.

Consider the fact that you have blind spots ?

We can’t always see ourselves accurately. Maybe this person is seeing something you can’t see about yourself.

Pray about the criticism

Ask God for wisdom ? “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you” (Psalm 32:8).

Ask others for their opinion

Your critic could be right or completely off-the-wall. If this is an area of sin or weakness in your life, then others will have seen it too.

Consider the source. ?

Don’t do this too quickly, but consider the other person’s possible motives, their level of expertise or wisdom, etc. They may be criticizing you to hurt you or they may not know what they’re talking about.

 

Three Questions To Ask Before You Post Something On Facebook

Facebook and Twitter can be fantastic tools for communication, encouragement, laughter, playing Farmville, posting pictures of your cute dog “Eloise”, and general rollicking goodness. But, like every good gift, there can also be a dark side to social media. An unhelpful side. A sinful side. Here are some questions to ask yourself before you post something on Facebook or Twitter.

Is It True?

Proverbs 18:17 says, “The one who states his case first seems right, until the other comes and examines him.” When posting something as fact, we need to ask ourselves, “Do I know the whole story?” and, “Is it possible that there is another side to this story?” Gossip and slander thrive on half-truths, so we always want to make sure that we have the whole story before posting something as true and factual. This is especially (!!!) true when saying anything about another person.?As Mark Twain (or Winston Churchill or Charles Spurgeon, depending on your source) famously said: “A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putting on its shoes.”

Is It Helpful?

Ephesians 4:29 says, “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” The things that we post on Facebook and Twitter should have a positive, grace-giving, non-corrupting effect on others. Before we post something we should ask, “Will this help others by encouraging them, making them laugh, inviting them to pray, giving them grace, etc?” Something may be true and yet still be unhelpful. I know that I’ve said things online that have not been helpful for other people, and I regret that. Please correct me if something I post isn’t helpful.

Will This Affect Others Negatively?

This is a little more subjective, but I think that it’s worth considering. When we post something we need to think about how it will affect others. So, for example, if I post an article about Barack Obama (I never do, but that’s not the point), there are two ways I could do it. I could post the article along with an angry, sarcastic comment about how much I hate our government and the general intelligence level of our governing officials. Or, I could post the article and state my disagreement in a way that won’t inflame people to anger or bitterness and is respectful toward Barack Obama.

It’s really important to think about these things because the way we talk about issues has a real effect on other people and can even lead people into sin. If I speak about something in an emotional, angry, inflamed, sarcastic, bitter way, other people will be led to respond in the same way. In Mark 9:42 Jesus said, “Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin,it would be better for him if a great millstone were hung around his neck and he were thrown into the sea.” Yikes! Those are serious words. I want to take the words I put online more seriously, because they have a real effect on others.

I’m a big fan of Facebook and Twitter. But I want to grow in posting things that give grace to others. Because my words matter, including the ones I type.

(+photo via)

How To Receive Criticism Like A Champ (Part 2)

If you read last week’s post on receiving criticism, I?m sure it changed your life and you are now the most humble person you know, desirous of the correction and input of others.

You freely admit, ?I?m not smarter than a fifth-grader and I’m a worse sinner.? ?You now view everyone who critiques you as a valuable friend. ??Thank you for smiting me in love,? you gush when corrected.

Right.

Well, we?ll keep trying. ?Like I said last week, I don?t love being corrected. ?But Jesus can help us grow. ?Here are a few more suggestions.

- Don’t be quick to defend yourself. ?Hey I thwacked Junior on the head with my iPad because he had a bad attitude!? ?Don?t make excuses: ?Well, I didn?t actually lie. ?It was theater. ?You know, drama. ?I just exaggerated a little bit for effect.? ?Sometimes it?s fine to offer reasons for our actions, but defensiveness usually comes from pride.

- Don?t write someone off because they fail to deliver criticism perfectly. ?Hey! ?You corrected me harshly! ?Your stinking attitude invalidates all you said.? ?Even if they sin, make your primary focus your failure, not theirs. ?You can talk about their sin some other time.

- Ask clarifying questions. Don?t require them to produce video footage, finger prints, and DNA evidence before you accept what they say, but if they have some examples that could help you see more clearly, welcome them.

- Watch your facial expression and body language. I know, your face feels like it?s going to crack into a thousand pieces. ?Don?t sit there with your arms crossed and an ?I dare you to say something negative? scowl on your face. ?Try not to start breathing heavily when someone is correcting you, like a snorting bull. ?Remember, you?re trying to make it easy for them.

- If you see what they?re saying, acknowledge it. James says, ?Confess your sins to one another.? ?Say, ?You?re right, honey. ?I should not have thwacked Junior on the head with my iPad. ?I was angry and that was sin. ?Junior, would you please forgive Daddy for his anger and for thwacking you on the head? ?I won?t thwack you any more. ?And anyway, my iPad?s broken now.?

- If you can?t see what someone is saying, don?t immediately write it off. You could say, ?I?m having a hard time seeing what you?re saying right now, but I certainly could be wrong. ?I know I have blind spots.?? Another thing you can do is ask others if they have observed the same thing.? Good chance if one person has seen a weakness or fault of yours, others have too (thanks Julian Freeman for this addition!).

- Ask them to please point it out again if you do it again. Because most likely you will.

Bottom line – we all need correction, input, reproof, adjustment, suggestions and help. ?A wise man or woman grows wiser by receiving these from others. ?OK, now go out there and get criticized!