Scripture: 2 Samuel 3, 1 Chronicles 12, Matthew 15
Matthew 15:13-14 “Every plant which my Father in heaven did not plant will be pulled up,” answered Jesus. “Don’t worry about them! They are blind leaders of the blind; and when one blind man leads another, both fall into a ditch.”
I’ve always believed that it’s important to listen to your critics. You can learn a lot from them!
But there is also a time to ignore your critics. Sometimes they’re wrong.
This was the case in this story in Matthew 15, where the religious leaders criticized Jesus and His disciples for not following the rules about washing their hands before meals. Jesus called them out for “disobeying God’s commands so you can follow your own teachings,” and for “honoring God with their words while their hearts were far from Him.” When His disciples told him that he had offended the Pharisees, He responds (v. 14-15) with “Don’t worry about them.”
Ignore them. They are wrong.
Every leader gets criticized. It’s part of the job. And you have to know when to listen to your critics and learn from them, and when to ignore them. It’s not always an easy call. I try to listen and learn first—that is my default, as it should be. But there are times when I simply have to walk away and not worry about it.
And that is hard for me. I can hear 10 compliments and one criticism, and it’s the criticism that keeps me up at night. I care too much what other people think. So Jesus’ example here is helpful. Sometimes your critics are wrong, and it’s ok just to ignore them and move on.
Prayer: Lord, my default is to listen and learn, and sometimes I am too bothered by my critics. Show me when I need to not worry about it and move on.