The other day, I opened my computer only to see a message addressed to me that said, “So just what do you think this passage means?Do you think it means nothing?”
If you think you picked up in the middle of a conversation, you’re mistaken.This is how this brother apparently thought would be a good way to begin a discussion.No, “Hello.” No, “Hope this finds you doing well.” No, “Hey brother, I read something you wrote and would like to ask you to clarify a couple of things.” All I got was an aggressive, accusatory, question.
Sadly, such correspondence is not a stranger to preachers.The amount of writing and speaking a preacher does makes him a target for people in the world and an equal number of Christians who still have the world in them.Therefore, it’s something we must learn to manage.And to be sure, preachers are not the only people who must deal with aggressive critics, so don’t “circle your emotional wagon” and feel singled out.
The following suggestions have unfortunately been learned through trial and error on my part.However, while I am far from perfect in my own implementation of these principles, I have tried to practice them consistently enough to know that they are useful.
- 不要立即做出反应。Sleep on an inflammatory text, email, or phone call before responding.Chances are that neither you nor your accuser will be in the right frame of mind to answer in a Christlike spirit or receive the answer in a Christlike spirit if responded to immediately.Cool off, first.Countless times, I have wanted to fire off a salvo of equally offensive responses to offensive accusations, but I have refrained and later have been glad I did.Frequently, I will go ahead and write my response, but not send it.Then, the next day when I read what I initially wrote, I am thankful that I did not reply immediately (Proverbs 26:4).This delay allows you to master your emotions and allows the Spirit, not the flesh, to rule your life.
- 尝试看看通过磨损性。Don’t let a valid criticism be dismissed because of the way it was delivered.While their accusation may be presented in a shameful manner, their accusation may be true.在使徒行传6：1，投诉（字面意思，口中念念有词 - 保罗说基督徒不应该做的 - 腓立比书2:14）被带到使徒。这不是处理一个问题，但要注意使徒如何处理它的方式。他们不解雇他们的投诉的实质内容并加以改正他们提出了申诉，以他们的注意力的方式。不，在那一刻，他们忽略了自己的错误，他们处理他们的投诉方式和处理他们的投诉的正当关切。
- 诚恳谦卑。停止感觉需要保护自己，只是继续做正确的。尼希米的敌人，曾经扬言要告诉他的谎言，如果他没有停止他的出色工作。对此，尼希米根本无视他们的投诉，并继续做好事，要求上帝加强他的手（尼希米记6：9）。I wish I knew how and when God’s providence is at work, but no sooner than I received this aggressive message last week, and nearly a dozen similar follow-up messages that I refused to acknowledge, the very next day, I received notes of encouragement “out of the blue.” Three respected gospel preachers thanked me for writing the article about which this other brother wanted to wrangle.困难，因为它可能是，克制自己，否定自己的满意“给他们一个表达你的不满”，并让上帝来加强你的手。
- 祈求你的控告。去年，几个弟兄们认为这将是一个好主意，把我的照片，两个人相处，在连接到移动卡车侧面的大横幅，并停放到旁边一条繁忙的高速公路。横幅指责教错误的我们。他们这样做后不久，我的手机就开始“吹起来，”和几十人是来给我说，“你知道吗”，“你知道吗...？” I deliberately decided to put into practice what I learned many years ago from Batsell Barrett Baxter.有一次，哥哥去了新闻与对兄弟巴克斯特一些刻薄的指责。不知道什么被写了关于他的，巴克斯特同时具有3个传教士朋友午餐获悉。Instead of railing against what this man had written, Baxter led his three preacher friends in a prayer for the man who wrote the article.Because of brother Baxter’s lead, I decided not to commiserate with those who came to me to let me know what these brothers had done, but to ask them to remember these brothers in their prayers.毕竟，他们并不需要一个反击，他们需要神的怜悯和宽恕。詹姆斯和约翰曾经想，当他们不善待从天上往下叫火，但耶稣提醒他们，他不希望自己的毁灭，但他们得救（路9:54）。
Again, don’t think for a moment that I have mastered these suggestions, but they are principles that I try to consistently practice when I face angry, aggressive, accusers.They have helped me, and I think they can help you too.