Reading for Today: Proverb Chapter 9
Verse 8-9: “Do not correct a scoffer, lest he hate you; Rebuke a wise man, and he will love you. Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser; Teach a just man, and he will increase in learning.”
I recently felt a need to approach someone that was so quick to correct others, that he was pushing everyone away from him. The funny thing about correcting someone for doing too much correcting is doing it without sounding like a hypocrite. How do you correct someone for being too quick to correct? It's all in the delivery. Even a novice can tell if your correction is because of your sincere interest in their well being or for something else. Somehow, you will be more likely to win someone over through correction if it is convincingly done in love. This person was so quick to correct every little infraction that I promised to buy him a black and white striped shirt, complete with a whistle and yellow flag. He felt like it was his duty to blow the whistle or throw the flag if someone said anything that wasn't precisely true. Even if it was somewhat true and very insignificant, it could not be overlooked. Every statement had to be entirely true to avoid a halt in the game to point out the violation. If I was to make a comment concerning the television show "Beretta" about the cop that had the white parrot, my friend would have to stop everything to ensure that I knew that it was not a parrot, but a cockatoo.
Have you ever known someone that is so fast to correct you or others that people just decide not to engage with that person? Yeah, I have too. For his best interest, I suggested he stick with only the more significant corrections. If someone says that you can pass while driving over a bridge or in a curve, you should correct them. Minimize the amount of correction you render to maintain openness between others and yourself. Weigh out whether someone is even open to correction. If they are, then you have done a great service. If they are not, why sow discord? Use wisdom in how you engage others in wisdom.
Lord, I want to restore people that may have been misled or that may have wondered from the truth. Help me to be able to know when someone would be restored through my correction and when they would just mock and reject wise counsel. If I do see a need to correct, enable me to restore that person in love. Amen
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