Critics? No one told me I would have critics when I volunteered to go off to preaching school in Dallas. What critics? I'm going to be a Gospel Preacher for heaven's sake!
As it turns out, critics exist. More stunning to me is how badly I needed (need) them.
We must have those who harp (even in non-instrumental churches) for such is of significance. If we don't have bossy butts and yapping dogs at our heels we are likely to believe things go well because we are so effective.
Critics are similar in role to Pharaoh's armies pressing God's children to be dependent upon Him. He delivers as the oppressors continue to push our buttons. We are forced to shift from self-dependence to God-dependence. This is necessary for every believer.
Paul had critics who were thorns in the flesh...II Cor. 12:5-10. He didn't like them and didn't want them. Yet, they were gifts from God.
Our critics are gifts from above. We need them. Things and people not going well are not bugs in the works. These are instruments presented for our learning. Critics help us to mature. Find the servant with no critics and I'll show you a childish self-serving person.
How do we handle critics? Well in reality, often with tears and anguish. Such is the point. If we choose not to quit (not to run), we will be forced to mature. One of God's most valuable tools in his Network is that of the barking dogs.
We learn to stand in the fire.
We learn. So don't waste your furnace. These times are...shall we say....critical?