The Thick Skin of the Beloved

“Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.” – 1 John 5:5 When someone has “thick skin,” they don’t get offended by criticism. If we live our lives around God’s love for us and live in that space, we develop a thick skin that enables us to do better and succeed. There’s this great guy who paints my house. He’s got an awesome truck covered in all sorts of rock and roll bumper stickers. He has long hair and tattoos and my son thinks he’s a pirate! As soon as he enters our house, he says, “What’s up, Pastor Bobby?” The last time he was at our house, I asked him, “How are you?” and I shook his hand. It was as if I had grasped a baseball glove that was wrapped in sandpaper; in other words, he had

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How Do You Respond to Feedback?

“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” – Proverbs 27:17 As we seek to have Jesus’ heart in leading others, it’s important to assess how we’re doing. In fact, one of the best and easiest ways to gauge our progress in this area is to ask ourselves a series of questions. That said, for the next few days, I want to offer three self-probing inquiries we can make as we emulate our Savior in both attitude and action. First of all, how do we respond to feedback? If we’re leading from a place of drive and ambition rather than calling, chances are we’ll react defensively to any hint of scrutiny. On the other hand, if we’re secure in what God has asked us to do, we’ll welcome constructive criticism as a gift. Though doing so demands that we lay our pride down on the altar of sacrifice, we

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