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Eric's Sunday Sermon; Correcting Another and Love or “How to Correct Another in Love”.

Updated on April 20, 2017

I don't think Water Buffalo's criticize each other.

But in fact Water Buffalo's follow human correction very well.
But in fact Water Buffalo's follow human correction very well. | Source

Those dreaded words; "You have to...."

Doesn’t this seem like it should be a how-to article instead of a sermon? And in a sense it may be but I encourage you to take what we speak of here for your own contemplation and not at all necessarily to follow.

I had a Dad that was a powerhouse of intellect and size. When I was a little boy I was never anything but self damning when he imposed some correctness on me. Not guilt. He did not say to me “Eric you let me down”, never once. He would simply explain that a correction was important and that I had to learn early about consequences. I generally erred a lot as a boy but not the same way twice. I could always find new ways. And here is a secret no more. I never minded discipline because I had done so much worse without getting caught. I am told that my first word that lasted as the only word for some time was “no”.

That little background is to get us thinking about how some people make it a good thing to correct us and that we have gotten away with much worse. Please stretch the limits of the rules. Please actually don’t even start or get into the box to think outside of. Be you and you are no container of rules. The Wright brothers tested the limits of the law of gravity. Even condemned as blasphemy to think man could rise into the heavens. And now just a footnote in our minds about Kitty hawk.

I test theological boundaries. I have very little reverence for religious, church or State laws. I try hard not to make it about being contrary to what someone has told me to believe. But that is a part of it I am sure based on years of error in this regard.

So how does a contrarian as myself allow for direct criticism, rebuking and correcting? How can any of us? It would seem that we, by just contemplating it may come up with some corrections we would like to make ourselves. Yes I slid that one up on you as it was snuck up on me. Do I correct my-self in Love?

Please don't talk back

Who me? A cookie?

I guess stealing that cookie was worth the correction!
I guess stealing that cookie was worth the correction! | Source

Growing requires acceptance

Self doubt and fear are our worst enemies regarding the ability to create. They are crippling monsters that seem to disobey the hand of God that wants us to create. Self doubt and fear are the number one obstacles to love. Does criticism and correction make us more confident or less? So cool to really reflect on this. I propose here that is does make us less going backward but should not going forward. How can any man criticize today that which I may accomplish tomorrow? In the now and in the future I am free of the criticism that I received 20 minutes ago. And here is the really freeing part. Bill just criticized me. I am fully free to accept it and put it into my quill of arrows for my next adventure in creating or let it gather dust on the path I was on way back when, when he offered it. Please note the subtle change we just made. We can frame a criticism as offered or made.

If we offer advice it has a good chance of being well received. If we make a critique? Probably less of a chance.

Is the “office complaint and bitch and moan box” called that? Trust me it is called a suggestion box. Are we as a society falling prey to not criticizing because the subject receiving it might get their feelings hurt? Is it “bullying” to point out that someone made a huge error? Perhaps we are going too far in that direction. But for our purposes here, we know those out of bounds are not violated if the negative remark is made in love. And it can be in every circumstance.

I did a stint as Dierker Consultancy, Problem Resolutions. I worked both corporate and personal sides. Nobody called me because they were doing great. They had a problem and I would actually get paid to solve it. Talk about breaking some eggs to make an omelet. The first order of business was always to get the folks involved to make a firm commitment that just because we would make corrections that did not translate into blame. The best person to make a correction is the one who made a mistake. We must be free to fail. So free that admitting a fault and moving forward is respected not looked down on. I can still hear it “Son the biggest mistake you made wasn’t being wrong it was in not openly admitting it.”

When the day is done, it is our choice on either side.

What will tomorrow bring?
What will tomorrow bring? | Source

Such a classic

Correct by example

So here is where things get quite sticky; beliefs. “I believe in writing in contractions and compound words and switching from the proper order of nouns and adjectives”. I get it if you want to criticize that because that is not how your book that you believe in says it should be done today. You like to write that “he was a funny black man”. I like to write “he was a black funny man”. To me the funny describes him more than the Black. We believe differently probably. Maybe not, but you could still criticize me for how I did it and you may be right.

We are so blessed by intellect that with very little effort we can offer a suggestion and we can thank someone for their insight no matter how rudely done. You do know that on the internet here we have folks who talk funny English like from England or Australia and even an innocuous comment from their point of view might be taken harshly by a shy little Arizona boy like me. And wonderfully vice versa.

There are two types of criticism that you can get in a loving manner. The first is just loving compassion to help you get back on track. The second can just be technical intellectual criticism for furtherance of understanding that can be made in love for both you and the subject. Being passionate about a subject/right or wrong in light of understanding is awesome. When you are more concerned with ideas than people perhaps it might be cool for you to bite your tongue quite often. Or at least hold it, until you figure out how to present it in a way that furthers inquiry and understanding.

Let us touch on faith here because like politics it gets tricky. Nobody that I have met feels and believes just like I do. I like that. I am a special child of God. As are you. Like billions and billions of snowflakes none of us can exactly at the same moment feel and believe the same. For sure it is miraculous but don’t you think that is also magical like a snow covered winter’s night with a billion stars? And likewise the last time I read a poem/psalm/verse and got exactly what somebody else did at that time was never.

But here is the very cool part. We do not need to correct another in faith. We may need to express how we believe to them. If you really want to rebuke someone into thinking your way that would not be to change the other’s way that would simply be to justify your belief. Children young and old who are believers or not will follow examples in love 99% more times than criticism. Be the light and the ship will correct its own path to reach safety.

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    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 9 days ago from Olympia, WA

      One of the reasons I love writing fiction is because no two fiction writers are the same, and grammatical rules do not have to be followed all the time. Now, considering life in general, there are some rule it would be nice if everyone followed....no murder, for example, is kind of a peaceful thing to contemplate....but then we get into nebulous areas like "you shouldn't raise your kids that way" or "that's no way to organize your work space," or "this is the proper way to teach a classroom of kids," and now we're in real murky area, and I believe what you are saying echos that...or maybe I just don't know what the hell I'm talking about. :) Wouldn't be the first time.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 9 days ago from Queensland Australia

      Eric, it no longer surprises me that your sermons seem to touch on areas that are particularly relevant to me at the time or enforce a theme I have just written about myself. I was given a lecture recently by a colleague in regard to my activity (or lack of) at The Creative a Exiles. This prompted me to write a response as an acrostic poem titled: "Respect: Don't Lecture Me Please." Well, your sermon here blew me away in its relevance to the situation. Thank you. The secret to correcting another is doing it "in love."

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 8 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Bill, normally I don't even consider driving laws as rules. I just drive my best not to harm anyone, and that normally keeps me within the law. It is all between my two ears and my heart.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 8 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      John, thank you. Your compliment is the best of the best that a preacher can receive. I truly appreciate you letting me know. I sit on a BOD for a charity. And one of the nicest qualities our fine CEO has is just thanking for help and never pressuring. He loves his job and lets us join him. Leading by love is awesome. And you do that friend.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 8 days ago from Southern Illinois

      Eric, I'm learning everyday that one way doesn't fit all, yet each way is right for that person. It hurts to be criticized in a non loving manner. Having a grown son who has his own ideas has taught me to listen. I love the video. I love Celine, and I adore you son with that chocolate face. Great message shared with us. Thank you..

    • Carb Diva profile image

      Linda Lum 8 days ago from Washington State, USA

      Oh Eric, what a beautiful sermon. I believe that we all have the same God, but we are each touched by that Spirit in a way that is exactly right for us, for where we are in that moment.

      When I sit in the pew at church on Sunday, I know that all of us hear the same words from our Pastor, but each of us internalizes and feels those words to our unique problems/concerns/joys. That, my brother, is what I believe is the work of the Holy Spirit.

      There is so much acceptance and joy in this sermon. Thank you for taking the time to put all of these amazing/caring thoughts together in a Hub!

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 8 days ago from San Diego California

      My beloved but ungrateful sons say I put them through a "validity check" even when they agree with me. You have to do this to prepare them for intellectual battle, you don't want them slinging a satchel like me. Your words are always oil on the grinding gears of my spiritual transmission. Inspiring work.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 8 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Ruby, you certainly seem to me to be one to accept folk's differences. Yet you hold true to your own set of standards and beliefs for yourself. That is very admirable and makes you a great friend.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 8 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Linda, thank you. Teaching Bible Study was so awesome when I could get the young people to share their thoughts on scripture. So often it would sound like something different altogether. And so one of my important tasks was to get them to see that their own thoughts were valid.

      I found that too many of them felt ashamed that their own thoughts did not match up exactly to the sermon. And we can't have that.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 8 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Mel, I hear ya on the elder children situation. Three little letters are our best ammo in the battle against complacency of the mind; "Why". I would suggest that perhaps your sons might just do better in life slinging a satchel rather than a briefcase.

      What kind of parrot are we having around here that are quite muted in color rather that bright?

    • Dana Tate profile image

      Dana Tate 8 days ago from LOS ANGELES

      How I love your Sermon's. They're not about preaching but teaching and what I learned is people love to be taught; but hardly anyone likes to be corrected.

      As a child I hated correction and despised anyone who tried to do it. As an adult I understand that the message is not the problem but sometimes it's the delivery of the message.

      Correction should always be done in love, it makes the difference between someone listening to your message and actually hearing your message.

      I would like to say that we should never allow fear or someones anger to stop us from telling them the truth. I believe it is our responsibility to care enough about our sisters and brothers to help them.

      It's the same as knowing there's a cliff ahead and you warned someone but they ignored you and continued to walk anyway; at least they were warned.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 7 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Dana I hear you. I sometimes have a problem when I am sure of the truth - I still have to figure out how I can say it in love, and whether the person is in a place to get it. As a dad I have had to do a lot of "knowing where the road leads" and yet having to let them walk it for themselves.

      You just reminded me to put wisdom in my prayers again. Thanks

    • tsmog profile image

      Tim Mitchell 7 days ago from Escondido, CA

      Another sermon read knowing is with a tone of love. I have no experience correcting as a parent, but feel that can be complex especially with a goal of being of love. A nod of the head to parents. I, too, am resistant to being corrected. And, as a manager I had to correct others too. I smile thinking how another higher in the food chain would correct me for how I corrected someone. Seems correcting has its own chain and it does bind us. My hope is Love is what brings us freedom from it.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 7 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thanks Tim, what a great notion "the chain of correcting". Been there and done that as I am youngest of six ;-) I made so many corrections that I assumed my mom had ordered of me, when in fact she ordered it of an elder sibling.

      And it reminds me of being in a circle of ten and whispering something in the ear and passing it along.

      Good stuff for thought here.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 4 days ago from New Delhi, India

      Your sermons are like guidelines and it makes one realise what can be done or what should be done rather than ' do this' or 'do that'. I believe no one wants to be lectured and self correction is most effective and ever lasting.

      Thanks for sharing another wonderful and thought provoking hub!

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 4 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you much Chitrangada. I like to think that we (readers and me) are growing together. Each of us to consider new areas of spiritual living. And then share. I am glad you are walking through life with me.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 2 days ago from The Caribbean

      "So free that admitting a fault and moving forward is respected not looked down on." This sentence and your final one make good quotes to memorize and live by. Thanks!

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 2 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Dora, I had somehow forgotten much of what is here, again I maybe wrote it largely for myself. Thank you.

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