The truth about criticism
Don’t copy everyone else. Be different.
Have you ever wondered if God wants to use you to do something new? I believe He does. You see, God doesn't need you to do exactly what other people are doing. Why not? Because it's already being done. Maybe He wants to start something brand new, something unusual, something that requires you to break away from the comfortable mould.
Don't look at what others are doing. I mean, learn from others and take wisdom from them. Even apply what’s good and applicable to you. But don't imitate them. Don’t settle for being a mock of something or someone. Look to God instead, asking Him what He wants you to do. Do what He says and not what the world says. I’m not sure if you’ve realised the state of the world lately, but do you really want to be like the rest of the world?
Be brave enough to be different. Different can be a very, very good thing.
Beware: if you do something different, you'll be criticised. Why? Cause it's different. But also, if you do what others are doing you'll get criticised. Why? Cause they'll say you're not as good at it. My point here is that criticism is a part of life – you’ll receive it whatever you do or don’t do.
But if you could choose what you’re criticised for, what would it be?
Would it be for doing something that’s already done or for something that’s daring and new? Something that’s easy and comfortable? Or something that’s life-changing and influential?
Be different. Do something different.
The world needs different. The world needs new.
If you’re worried that your wild dream is too different or too new, remember who goes with you. This same God who speaks in Isaiah 43:16-19 is with you, and if He wants to make something happen, He’ll make it happen. Have a read of this passage:
Thus says the Lord, who makes a way in the sea, a path in the mighty waters, who brings forth chariot and horse, army and warrior; they lie down, they cannot rise, they are extinguished, quenched like a wick: “Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
Behold! Such a dramatic word – I dare you to start using it. But on a serious note, how great is the last sentence of the above passage! He can make a way through anything. He wants to use you for something new. And He is more than an expert at doing the new.
Through the grace of God you have been made into a new creation. So why not do something new and live differently (holy) to reflect this newness of life?
Don’t copy the behaviour and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. (Romans 12:2)
If anyone belongs to Christ, there is a new creation. The old things have gone; everything is made new! (2 Corinthians 5:17)
You must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, and they are full of greed. That, however, is not the way of life you learned when you heard about Christ and were taught in Him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. (Ephesians 4:17-24)
We are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. (Ephesians 2:10)
As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as He who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy. (1 Peter 1:14-16)
You’re a new creation, so be holy, be different.
Remember that you will always face criticism and people’s disapproval whatever you choose to do or not do. So what is it you want to be criticised for?