David was anointed and Saul tried to kill him. Joseph was the favored son so his brothers tried to kill him. Elijah was God’s anointed prophet and Jezebel tried to scare him to death, drive him crazy and get him to commit suicide. Saul, the evil brothers, and Jezebel were threatened and insecure. They acted as many people do when they come up against movers and shakers.
Your enemies have tried to throw you in the pit, but God is turning around and blessing you with the palace...and they hate you for it. (That's okay, move right in, baby.) Your enemies have tried to get you to sit out under the broom tree like Elijah, but instead you've decided to start Broom Tree Ministries, make your pain your platform and leave your enemies in the dust!
This makes them want to scream. Sometimes, just like Saul, Jezebel, or the evil brothers -- people will attack and try to destroy you too. Amidst your success, (no matter how sweet it is) you never relish the fact that somebody is out to get you.
I know sometimes you feel like giving up or quitting because you get tired of criticism. What a yo-yo life the ministry is. I remember years ago on a specific day, somebody told me how anointed I was, how blessed they were to have me as their pastor, how incredibly caring I was. On the same exact day, I received a lambasting from somebody telling me what a terrible pastor I was, how uncaring I was, etc. I thought, "Wow, do these two people realize, they are talking about the SAME person?" If only they knew. To one congregant, you are the angel that God has sent them. Others are convinced you might just be a demon.
If you ever do something major in your life, it will cause criticism to arise. There’s an old saying, “Say nothing, do nothing…be nothing.” As one of the pastoring partners in our network, Ronnelle Thomas-Brunswick ("Flow" on the message boards), says, "if you don't make waves, you'll drown."
When you begin to really pursue God’s purpose in your life, you will be talked about – I guarantee it!
You can either drown by staying still because you’re scared to do anything because of fear of criticism, or you can step out and get even better.
When you decide to pursue the call of God upon your life, you'll give 'em something to talk about. Facing criticism or the whisper of gossip is not an "if" it's a "when." It's a given, if you're ever going to get something done. I remember years ago someone really criticized my preaching style. At first I got angry. Of the person who spoke it, I truthfully thought,"you are just so jealous, because you only wish you had the opportunity to speak to people as I do." This person was trying to be my clone, which further made me think this. Although I was convinced it was jealousy, I did began to ponder their particular criticism later on and thought, "I wonder if there's any truth to that?" I began to analyze my preaching tapes. Although I did not find their particular criticism justified, especially after taking the matter to two close pastor friends and asking them to evaluate me -- I did find a lot of other things I noticed that I needed to improve on! And, I began to diligently work on the list of things that came to my attention. I became a much more effective speaker as a result. That experience brought about something else that has been very beneficial in my life -- the habit of evaluating my messages on a regular basis. Now, I strongly evaluate every message I ever bring. I'm determined to not be static, but strive for more, always. Evaluating every message helps me in honing skills and further becoming what God wants me to be. All of that came through an unjustified criticism that turned out to be just what I needed to propel me to a new level. I now THANK GOD for that critic!
Anyone who experiences a lot of successes also experiences a lot of failures. Abraham Lincoln tried for the presidency sixteen times before he succeeded. A couple who are among my husband and my circle of friends are entrepreneurs who have several very successful businesses. For their few businesses that have brought them great success, they have probably tried fifty different ventures over their lifetime, the majority of which have failed but a few that have been extremely successful and made it possible to live the very blessed life they now live. It drives this couple’s critics absolutely crazy when pondering how successful they are. They’ve been laughed at and scoffed by many of their critics over the years when they have failed, but nevertheless, they have gotten back up and tried again.
Has someone been laughing at your attempts...or your failures?
Have you been living under a drone of criticism?
It’s not time to turn around…not time to quit…not time to retreat. It's time for you to go FULL STEAM AHEAD.
In Joshua 1:6,7, and 9, the Lord tells Joshua three times, ‘BE STRONG AND COURAGEOUS.” He says the same to you today. Woman of God, He has called you to greatness. He has a divine purpose for you and it will be fulfilled despite your critics…if you continue to step out and take God at His Word, and seek His face. The gifts and calling of God are resident within you.
There was once a mule who fell into a dry well. The farmer had meant to close off the well many times but just kept forgetting. Finally he got into a fix because the mule landed down in the well. "What in the world am I going to do?" he thought. How do you get a mule out of a well? Regretfully he decided there was no way he could get the mule out, so he he had to bury the mule alive. He began to shovel dirt down into the well. Each time he threw a shovel full of dirt down in the well, the mule would shake it off and stamp on it. The farmer kept shoveling, and the mule kept on stomping. This went on repeatedly for several hours. Finally, the dirt got high enough that the mule walked right out of the well!
What is the point of this story? When somebody throws dirt on you, shake it off, step forward with determination and walk right out into your destiny. When people throw dirt your way, let it propel you right on into your next level! Thank God for your critics! Without them, you'd never get to where you need to go. Where would Elijah be without the prophets of Baal? Where would David be without Goliath? Where would Joseph be without those evil brothers of his? Learn this -- an enemy will be used by God without even knowing it to lead you straight into your destiny. An enemy will be used of God to move you to a new level when the benefits of your current situation have run out.
And it will drive them absolutely, undeniably, incredibly bonkers as they see the favor of God on your life!!!! If they knew the anointing of God that is being released in your life they wouldn't be able to sleep at night. I'm telling you, they would wish to God they had an anti-depressant cocktail when they see how God is blessing you.
Give 'em something to talk about. Then shake it off, stomp on it, and walk out into your next level. God hasn't called you to drown, or to be buried alive. He's called you for a divine purpose. Keep splashing and stomping to the next level.