How To Overcome A Critical Spirit And Find Joy In Your Life

Learn how you can be set free from being critical and finding fault in others

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Let me start this teaching on overcoming a critical spirit with a story.

Two farmers went out duck hunting. One man was a positive person who always saw the good in life, and the other was a classic example of a person with a critical spirit.

Both men went out duck hunting one day, and the positive person had a new hunting dog. The man couldn’t wait to show his critical friend his new dog. This dog was an extraordinary dog, and the man just knew that his negative friend would have to say something positive about this dog.

Well, they got to the duck pond that they always went hunting at and just like clockwork a flock of ducks flew over. Both men were able to shoot a duck, and so they called the hunting dog to retrieve the ducks.

Lickety-split, the dog, raced out on the water and grabbed both ducks running on top of the water both ways.

Well, the positive farmer said to his critical friend, “What do you think about that?” to which his faultfinding friends answered,

“Can’t swim can he?”

image of a man being critical about someone

What Is A Critical Spirit?

A critical spirit or fault finding attitude can be a work of the flesh. It is only natural to notice the faults and flaws of others, but what we do with what we see will make all the difference in the world. It doesn’t take a whole lot of discernment to notice the flaws and weaknesses of others.

God gives us the ability to see things in people that need to be fixed so we can help people grow in the Lord and see definite improvements in their life.

We need to be careful not to use this ability to discern areas that need work in people’s lives to develop into a critical spirit. When we start looking at the negative attributes of a person rather than the positive we are heading into a severe sin in our own lives.

The sin of faultfinding and being critical can tear up churches, marriages, and friendships. It turns molehills into mountains. It makes us become the type of people that Jesus was speaking about when He compared people with this problem to those that are trying to take a speck out of their brother’s eye when they have a log in their own.

People who have a critical spirit are usually very negative about life and cannot see the blessings that God has given all around them. They are focused on the negative rather than the positive.

woman holding a sign that says Really?

How to overcome a faultfinding and critical spirit.

  1. If you know you are guilty of this sin, then repent. The first thing you need to do is agree with God about what He thinks of this. You have agreed with yourself way too much, and you need to agree with God about this. God calls it sin. So call it sin and ask God to forgive you and turn away from following this path anymore.
  2. If you believe you have been demonically influenced then start engaging in spiritual warfare. The Bible teaches that it is through prayer and fasting that demonic power is overcome. (Matt. 17:21) Start spending more time in prayer. Spend some time fasting. Get your Christian friends and leaders to agree with you in prayer that this demonic stronghold will be defeated in you.
  3. Remind yourself of the grace that God has shown you. Instead of focusing on the lack in the lives of others, remind yourself of the deficiency that is in your own life and how God has graciously dealt with you rather than finding fault with you.
  4. Walk in the Spirit. Instead of focusing on the lives of others, make your focus to stay filled with the Holy Spirit throughout your day. The fruits of the Spirit and birthed by the Holy Spirit in you. Keep your attention on staying filled with His Spirit, and you won’t have time to look for the faults of others.

I hope you have found this teaching both inspirational and instructional and that you did not find any faultfinding or criticism directed towards you from me.

We all go through different struggles in our spiritual walks, and this is no different from any other battle. I am confident that God will bring freedom, joy, and grace to every one of you.

Blessings to you!

Pastor Duke

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Duke Taber
Pastor Duke Taber is an alumnus of L.I.F.E. Bible College and Multnomah Biblical Seminary. He has been in pastoral ministry since 1988.

Pastor Duke specializes in healing hurting churches and bringing revival, renewal, and restoration of the presence of God to the body of Christ in America to make the church spiritual again.

Pastor Duke has a few limited dates available to speak in other churches. If your church needs a fresh move of the Spirit of God or has gone through a painful and wounding season, click here.

Today he is the owner and managing editor of 3 successful Christian websites that support missionaries around the world. Currently he is serving as a Technology Consultant for Living Waters Fellowship In Mesquite Nv.


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  1. Yes, I found you both critical and judgmental…NOT!!!!
    This is just what I needed. I have been guilty of these sins myself off and on for quite awhile. I am very frustrated and feeling hopeless about getting rid of them. I haven’t always been like this. I am sure God is disappointed with me. In fact it is good to know that your instruction is what I’m tackling except for the fasting part. For me being critical and judgmental has to do with some hurt feelings that I haven’t been able to totally forgive yet…there again a work in progress. I am so grateful for God, His Word, Son and Holy Spirit! Thank you for your article! I was getting your daily devotional. I understand you are using pinterest now? I don’t know anything about that. Thanks for staying on facebook.
    Blessings and peace


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