Each of us will encounter an occasional anonymous critic. If you open your mouth and express your opinion you will have someone who has no relationship with you pull out their fillet knife of correction and attempt to cut you down to their size. These are people whose only platform for criticism is behind the walls of cowardice trapped in an enclosure created by fear. The Internet has produced an army of these critics whose anonymity is actually a stimulant for a sad and isolated life.
When these critics send me their words of disdain and disgust (I had one this morning), I do three things.
1. I read their comments. I read them because I could have missed something and even though the form of communication was flawed, I still need to be large enough emotionally to put on my big boy pants and take an honest look.
2. As I read what many times are harsh and dismissive words, I realize on the other end of the comment is a real person, broken just like me. When I hit the delete button on my blog or block someone on social media, the person on the other end is a person loved by God. If I forget that point, I will lose a bit of my humanity.
3. Finally, I actually say out loud a blessing over the person. I bless them because I have not been empowered to carry the fruit of their judgment in my own heart as an unresolved offense. The blessing removes the weight of their words and sets me free.
After you have done these three things move on. Never park at any criticism especially the criticism of a fear-bound anonymous critic. Each of us carries a slice of a much greater revelation than our limited view contains. This applies to all of us – the critics and the criticized alike. If we can learn to live together in open and honest conversations maybe we would show the world a brighter hope than the tarnished one we sometimes present.