Okay, I admit it! Faint praise is hurtful and defeating.
Today, I was the recipient of faint praise.
We were talking about how the weekly study was going. I am one of the teachers. Going of topic a bit, she named her favorite teachers, 2 of the paid church staff, professionals.
Okay, I know, I asked for it when I said light heartedly, at least I thought it was, when I said “Not me?” Stupid, so stupid.
I was hurt and disappointed with her scramble to give an answer. I did want to be one of her best. Her approval of what I do and how I do it is so important to me, too important. I didn’t even make the cut it turns out. And yes, I am still working on how to receive faint praise well.
Only as I began to process this conversation that included faint praise of my own teaching did it occur to me wonder “How does God feel about my own faint praise?” My conclusion is that it makes Him sad.
God does not scramble for answers. He doesn’t ask stupid questions. Yet He feels pain of the heart just like me (Genesis 6:6b…his heart was filled with pain). He is very plain-spoken. He wants our praise to be wholehearted and true.
“Faint praise is damning”is an old truism. Faint praise is lukewarm, like spittle… you know… spit spewed out. Faint praise is pitiful.
I wonder why I can’t praise Him wiht the same thrill of excitement I feel when I discover something so utterly astounding in His Word? With the same love showered on a child? Why do I hold back> Sin, lack of humility, pride, fear…the list could go on. Holding back from the good is a tendency of mine.
So…what does God think of my faint praise? Not much.
Wonder how God feels at my faint praise? Not appreciated.
So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth. Revelations 3:16 (EVS)
For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless toward him. II Chronicles 16:9a (EVS)