Earlier this week I was in the kitchen as Preston walked through the front door from school. He sat down in a chair with a huge sigh and said “Everyone’s a critic.” I wasn’t sure what he meant so I said “What do you mean by that?”
Preston at "Toads Fun Center" celebrating his birthday earlier this month
He said, “Girls are mainly critics” – so I said “Okay Preston, you be the critic, what could I do better for you as a mother to make you happy?” Preston thought about it for 10 seconds and said with a little smirk on his face “feed me more.” Then he said, “Actually, I am pretty happy.” So ended that, but I kept thinking about criticism we receive (and give) everyday.
I get the local daily newspaper and in the Saturday Religion Section I found an article titled:
“Most of us come with strengths and weaknesses”
Who is bugging you these days? Anybody?
Disregard extremists and radicals such as terrorists, pedophiles and hooligans. Instead, consider your relationships with family, friends and acquaintances.
What bothers you about them? Are they greedy? Disagreeable? Arrogant? Argumentative? Rude? Critical? Controlling? Self-centered? Mean? Insensitive? Impatient? Ah, the list of possibilities is long.
Psychologists say other people’s traits that bug us are likely traits within ourselves we deny or suppress. This is called projection. We project onto other people that which we deny in ourselves.
It’s not always projection particularly if we don’t feel an emotional twinge when observing an attribute in another. But people who get under our skin may be reflecting some of our own personality traits back to us…..
Jesus wanted us to see ourselves for who we are. He taught before we judge others, we should look within ourselves.
It is freeing to acknowledge the truth: we are not perfect, but God loves us anyway.
Bringing the reality of our shortcomings to light makes us more understanding and increases our sense of compassion for others.