Last week, I talked about receiving Loving Correction––that is, correction and/or criticism offered in Love, to benefit the one accepting it. Hard as it may be, it’s important to learn this concept. It will help us grow as human beings and become more compassionate followers of Christ.
I’ve had to give Loving Correction before. And with this reunited friend, I’m lovingly trying to help her see how some of her attitudes have not been the most godly. I’m also learning, with her, that as much as I think I know her, and think she’s on the same spiritual educational level as I am––I’m learning that there are basic principles she doesn’t understand. It rather amazed me.
It’s because of her emotional wounds from the past. I’m trying to help her see those negative attitudes are things she can choose to change.
When giving Loving Correction, there are three parts to it. 1) You say something really good or nice about that person. 2) You show them, in a gentle way, what they need to look at or change. 3) You encourage them to continue their pursuit of God.
Sometimes, I forget to follow this. Recently, I gave a criticism to a fellow writer. I sort of followed this three-part guideline, and yet, I think, the criticism was longer than numbers one and three. As I realized that, I again, tried to re-iterate their greatest strength, which was their story idea.
A little over a year ago, someone I was sort of mentoring in an area, kind of presumed something of me that I wasn’t willing to give. I tried to show her gently, but I’d already had to correct her in an area, and this second time didn’t go so well with her, and she broke off the connection. That’s all right. I bless her and hope that she finds what she’s looking for elsewhere. The first time I had to deliver criticism to her, she said, “That’s the nicest way anyone has ever corrected me.” Of course, that made me feel pretty good. I’d done it right.
Maybe we’ll never get to the point where we’ll Love Correction, giving or receiving it––but if we can make a decision whenever this comes up, to respond correctly, it will help us. We’ll be transformed on the inside, more pliable to God’s plans, and our hearts will remain soft, and not harden.
In Exodus, Pharoah hardened his heart, and his country was destroyed. Whenever we make a choice to respond from wounding, from anger, rejection, or bitterness, our hearts harden. Sometimes it’s not easy to accept correction, but if we will open our hearts to receive it in Love, and from Love, our souls will prosper and we will live in peace.
Have you had to give Loving Correction? Leave a comment and let me know.