Recently I had the joy of having some dental work done, my first crown. For the price I paid for that crown, it should have diamonds and rubies and sit on my head, not in my mouth! Anyway, upon leaving the office, the dentist instructed me to gargle with salt for the next 3 days to prevent any infection. When the time came to do my salt rinse, I decided not to take the salt shaker from the kitchen table since it would remain in the bathroom for three days. Instead, I grabbed a salt shaker from the cupboard which we use for picnics. I headed to the bathroom, poured some salt in a cup of warm water and began to rinse my mouth and gargle. I spit out the first mouthful with skepticism. I picked up the salt shaker and examined the label. Hmmm…let me try again. I took a second swig of my salt water and started to rinse my mouth. But again after a few seconds…nothing. I spit it out. I must not have added enough salt. That’s the problem. So I poured more salt in my cup and stirred really well. Finally I was ready for a good salt rinse. I sipped, swished, gargled, spit. Nothing…again. I checked the container a second time. It clearly said “salt” on the container. I poured some in my hand. It looked like salt and felt like salt. But it did not taste like salt. My salt had lost its saltiness!
. . .how easily we can get distracted by the taunts of the critics in our lives. Many things are vying to pull us away from the calling and mission God has given us. The most important thing you can do to overcome criticism is to remain focused on your calling. The enemy’s goal is to distract you, and what better way to get you off track than to cut you down with criticism?
How are you reacting to criticism? Can you shake it off and refocus on “your game,” or do you throw in the towel and give up the match? Are you allowing criticism to distract you from your calling or purpose?
“Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:58).
God has gifted and called you for the unique role you play. He does not promise that your journey will be an easy one, and you will likely have your share of critics, but he will equip you as long as you keep your focus on him.
To read the rest of this article click Stay Focused, an article from Gifted for Leadership.
Last Friday I tripped on my way to lunch at our favorite Indian restaurant. For no apparent reason, there I was sprawled on the sidewalk with a very sore right hand.
So here I am a few days later tapping out this post on my iPod. Oh how much this tiny broken bone has affected. I’m learning to eat with my left hand. Brush my hair with my left hand and even stranger, brush my teeth with my left hand. This is such a tiny thing in the grand scheme of things. But . . .
It has made me so thankful for what wasn’t hurt and for what cannot be taken from me. It has made me even more grateful for letting us serve among so gracious and thoughtful people. It made me so thankful for such rapid communication to ask for prayer and receive such lovely notes of concern.
The wrinkled and lame old woman who sits around our local coffee shop called me over to ask about my bandaged arm. I didn’t even know before this that she spoke English. She is one I’ve always caught her eye and smiled at, but because of this tiny bone, I’ll stop and talk to also.
What are some tiny things you can be thankful for today?
This month, John McVay let us know about his new book. He edited
By Ask a Missionary:Time-Tested Answers From Those Who’ve Been There. Over 100 missionaries share their insightful wisdom and practical advice on everything from making the decision to go, to stepping into a new life once on the field and everything in between.
Peter’s Wife is cited in the Resource section of the book. We want to thank John for including us in his book. For more information see: Ask a Missionary