Critical Thinking <3

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Yesterday was interesting as I had my first post-pandemic-start-up hair appointment. 

In case you were wondering, we learned in the 15 week hair sabbatical that I actually only have a couple of little strands of gray on the sides, I definitely lean more towards brown and dishwater blonde without the benefit of highlights and my hair grows at a pace of about…

Not. At. All. 

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Since I was supposed to be with the littles all day long and given the facts I just shared above, Russ opted to take a day off and go up first thing in the morning until I could join him. In the three hours between his arrival and my joining up, they had donuts, several walks and a trip to the park. 

Then we piled them in the car and drove about 45 minutes to another city who has opened up part of their zoo. Between that and the Bass Pro Shop, we burned off some energy and headed her on home so Papi and Lola could return to their place and crash. 

Russ may have asked me a time or two how I do it by myself, to which I responded (as I always do when asked this)…not well, my friend…not well. 

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While I have gained some maturity and let go of some hyper-perfection when it comes to children, I continue to struggle with all the shortcomings I encountered as a mom. 

As in most of my life, there is a nagging critic running color commentary on my shoulder most of the hours of the day. 

So this morning, I was quite delighted to read for the umpteenth time these words from Oswald Chambers…and YES!! I do apply them…every year when I read them, I feel God shaving off some more layers of my dead self and breathing His thoughts, and words and life into my soul. 

Oswald reminds me that we are not to judge. 

He says:

Criticism is one of the ordinary activities of people, but in the spiritual realm nothing is accomplished by it. The effect of criticism is the dividing up of the strengths of the one being criticized. The Holy Spirit is the only one in the proper position to criticize, and He alone is able to show what is wrong without hurting or wounding. 

Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest; June 17 Updated edition edited by James Reimann; 1992 Oswald Chambers Publications Association, Ltd.

Besides the inner voice that is inbred in me to look for flaws and point them out – mine and everyone else’s, I live in a world where every thought, word and deed is being critiqued constantly. 

The devotion in My Utmost for His Highest reminds me that my noting of things that are not as they should be is something that I am to take to God in prayer.

The fact that I see them is part of my human nature,BUT what I do with this knowledge and information should be different from what the world does.

Chambers reminds us that we do not know the whole story on anyone and so we must trust God to work in those around us and to guide us as we search our own hearts and lives for places that need correction and repentance. 

I am regenerate – born again – and so when I become aware of imperfections in me or in others, that is my signal to pray and release them to the Holy Spirit, trusting in His work in me and in those around me, because…oh how I love this…He is able to show what is wrong without hurting or wounding. 

When it comes to the negative thoughts I assign myself, I need to ask…is it true? If it is, I need to do my part to change…if it is not…I need God’s help to replace lies with the truth. 

Do you need some growth and correction that doesn’t hurt or wound? 

I sure do. 

And I want to be an agent of change and growth in others WITHOUT hurting or wounding them! 

There is healing in turning to God for all of us. He is about the business of making us whole and healthy. We who follow Christ should be markedly different from the rest of the world in our thoughts, words and attitudes but we daily need His help to be transformed. 

Blessings on each of you this day as you turn to Him and allow His Spirit to work in you. Tomorrow I want to share some thoughts about what I find helpful to tame the voice of the critic inside me…

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check out the feet…just over the line…every time <3
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