Saturday, December 14, 2013

Constructive Criticism

The dictionary defines Constructive Criticism as: 

:criticism or advice that is useful and intended to help or improve something, often with an offer of possible solutions.

Thursday night this definition came to life. It was at my house, where a behavior specialist observed our home setting, for future services with our son who has been struggling. Our insurance approved a few sessions and I was initially so excited, until I found out she would be "observing" us. 

Satan had fun consuming my thoughts all day. I worried, like crazy, thinking someone would be watching and critiquing my every move as a mom and how that impacts my son's behavior. I was so afraid of what she might say about my parenting. I failed to see Andrea as a "helper" and thought of her as a critic instead. 

I was so wrong. She wanted to see his behavior and how we, together, could help him succeed. The night went good and we had a few "episodes" that were very minor compared to normal. At the end she gave positive feedback and some constructive criticism as well. The Lord had softened my heart and allowed me to receive. Through her, I saw some areas I need to work on, as a mom, as well as those my son needs to hone in on. I took notes and made a plan to implement her ideas into our routine daily. 

The Bible talks about constructive criticism too.

If you listen to constructive criticism, you will be at home among the wise. - Proverbs 15:31

Without wise leadership, a nation falls; with many counselors, there is safety.  - Proverbs 11:14

If you ignore criticism, you will end in poverty and disgrace; if you accept criticism, you will be honored. - Proverbs 13:18

A wise person is hungry for truth, while the fool feeds on trash. - Proverbs 15:14

If you reject criticism, you only harm yourself; but if you listen to correction, you grow in understanding. - Proverbs 15:31

How do you receive constructive criticism?

In those tough moments, when a friend needs some counsel (or constructive criticism), are you willing to pray and pull them aside to share. 

I am grateful the Lord used Andrea to nudge me along and invite me to be a better mommy. All throughout life, God provides opportunity for growth to make us look more and more like Him. It's important to keep our hearts open and ready to receive it. Because the Word says, in doing that, we will be among the wise :) I want to be a wise mommy, don't you?

What is God saying to you?
What do you think He wants you to do?

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