“As an earring of gold, and an ornament of fine gold, so is a wise reprover upon an obedient ear.” (Proverbs 25:12)
We grow to the degree that we can receive correction. We also demonstrate humility when we patiently receive a reproof.
It is so easy to become defensive when we perceive someone is finding fault with us. We quickly seek to justify ourselves or we snap back with a countercharge. We don’t like it when another would make us feel ashamed. We much prefer a pat on the back. But if we would be willing to take a correction patiently, instead of defensively, we might discover that there was some truth or value in what was said.
Too often we don’t like the other person’s delivery. But we do well to get past another’s manner to the “meat” of what they’re wanting to communicate. If we immediately put up our defenses, no one gets anywhere; communication breaks down and new offenses are created. If we are swift to hear, slow to speak, and slow to get angry, we can digest what our reprover said. It may sting at first, but in the end, faithful are the wounds of a friend. We may even eventually thank our “critic” who will marvel at our meek and teachable spirit.
Before honor is humility. Clothe yourself with humility. Determine to take “criticism” patiently. Put down your defenses and listen. You might learn something. You will certainly gain respect.