Criticizing Criticism

Thursday, July 13                       

There’s a big difference between criticism and critiquing.  When I criticize someone, it’s directed at the person and is generally negative.  It implies that I am better and the other person is negligent, unwise, or incapable of doing something right.  No matter what truth there is in my evaluation, it smacks of pride.  Critiquing, however, is aimed at an action or performance, not a person.  It is motivated by a desire to help, to improve something.  Criticizing, then, is counter productive.  It will help no one.  And it often takes place behind one’s back.  Criticism is not welcome and tends to make enemies.  So why am I so prone to criticize?   It’s because I have the same kind of sin nature that you do.  On the other hand, critiquing is positive.  It is often asked for and will generally produce good results—depending on the accuracy of the evaluation and whether or not the advice has merit.  It will be well received if it is given from a loving heart.  By the way, there’s another side to this critique thing.  When was the last time you asked someone to critique something in your life?  And what does that tell you about you?  Don’t ask me the same question.  I would be embarrassed.  We’re in trouble if we think we don’t need to improve.

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