God’s Favor FOR You is Greater Than Criticism Against You

Text on grey background with quote God is turning criticism into an opportunity for His gloryHas this ever happened to you?
You launched out in obedience to God, gave the best of your gift, and poured out your heart. And then, someone criticized you. Or questioned your priorities.

There was no kindness in it—and you knew that comment was wrongly motivated.
But still, it hurt.
And it may even have caused you to step back, for a while.

But God who called you sees your heart—He celebrates your gift! And He is turning that criticism into an opportunity for His glory.

A Purely Motivated Gift

It is Mary’s personal offering to Jesus—and the sacrificial gift she brings to the table.
John writes, “…Mary took a pound of very costly oil of spikenard, anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil.” (John 12:3, NKJV)

This gift means more than anyone in that room can imagine!
For it is prophetic in nature and timing.

And yet, right, smack in the middle of that wonder, Judas Iscariot throws in a negative remark.
He challenges Mary’s offering, saying: “Why was this fragrant oil not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” (v5)

When You are Sensitive to the Atmosphere

It is a thinly veiled accusation and Judas’ negative words cut across everything of beauty and glory taking place at that moment.

For those of you who are discerners, and are sensitive to atmospheres, moments like this can be doubly grieving.

  • In one moment, you are rejoicing in the wonder of what God is doing—and in the Holy Spirit’s anointing
  • Then in the next, you realize the atmosphere has been defiled, as the accuser has made his presence known

And someone has released words—that may be demonic in origin—into the space you occupy.

4 Ways God is Moving to Turn Criticism Around

Yet this is the power of redemption! That God can take what has caused you pain and use it for gain—for the advancement of His Kingdom.

In Jesus’ immediate response to Judas, he models Godly wisdom to His disciples, which speaks to us today. Here are four insights from this story, to aid when you (or someone you lead) has been unjustly criticized:

1. Look to Jesus First

Jesus immediately speaks on behalf of Mary. He defends her and praises her actions.

And it’s a reminder, that when criticism comes against your anointed ministry, God’s perspective is what matters!

Remember your Father is for you, and He’s in control, even when a negative interruption has thrown you off guard.
And that Jesus Himself is your shield.

Sometimes, we need to hold our breath and wait to hear what He is saying.
And to know, there is power in a pause!
For it enables us to respond out of God’s wisdom.

2. The Anointing Exposes What is Not of God

As John narrates, he explains that Judas’ motive is based on greed, saying:

“This he [Judas] said, not that he cared for the poor, but because he was a thief, and had the money box; and he used to take what was put in it.” (John 12:6, NKJV)

Now, we can lean in, to see an advantage—which is that light reveals what has been hidden in darkness!

And at this moment, Judas’ true nature is made visible.

What’s more, we can see this is a consequence of the Holy Spirit’s anointing at work.

  • One person’s intimacy with Jesus will expose another person’s ungodly attitude

As Paul wrote,
“But all things that are exposed are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light.” (Eph 5:13, NKJV)

3. It Provides an Opportunity to Speak Truth

Thirdly, the open attack provides an opportunity for Jesus to directly address it.

Criticism is an expression of disapproval. And it usually comes with some “line of reasoning”.
It may sound persuasive, but God has a higher viewpoint and it’s time to declare it.

And Jesus says, “Let her alone; she has kept this for the day of My burial. For the poor you have with you always, but Me you do not have always.” (John 12:7-8, NKJV)

The opposite of disapproval is favor and the acceptance of God!
And that is your true portion.

4. Criticism Allows for Refocus on God’s Plans

Judas’ comment invites debate. And it could easily distract people from what God is doing.

But Jesus doesn’t allow this to happen. Instead, He takes the opportunity to refocus on what God is doing.

And in His reply to Judas, Jesus speaks once more about His purpose—and what is about to take place.

“Let her alone; she has kept this for the day of My burial”

Another Time, Another Criticism

It’s interesting that this is not the first time Mary is criticized. Earlier, her sister Martha also questioned Mary’s priorities (Luke 10:38-42).
And there are other parallels:

  • Both implied Mary should be doing some other form of service
  • Each time it took place in her own home (this also speaks of her identity coming under fire)
  • And Jesus Himself defended Mary in both instances

And I believe there are some “Marys” who are reading this right now.
You are the worshiper, the prayer warrior, devoted to Jesus—but sometimes, you feel misunderstood.
And others don’t always value the offering that you bring.

A Purely Motivated Gift

Receive His touch today. And be assured—NO device of the enemy can interrupt the destiny of a worshiper!

For when God‘s favor has established you, no one‘s criticism can remove you.

This is a time for the anointing to pour forth—the ministry of the Holy Spirit—and He will pour out. For nothing can stop the work that humbly honors Jesus. And criticism cannot quench an anointed gift.

Instead, the full power is breaking loose out of this moment, and out of this time and season.
From earth to Heaven—the hearts of God’s people in sacrificial worship. And from Heaven to earth—in the revelation of our Savior.

Finally, if you can relate to this today, let this word encourage you:

No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises against you in judgment you shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is from Me,” says the LORD.” (Is 54:17, NKJV)


This example, and the theme of this post, is of accusation that is sourced in the kingdom of darkness, coming against a purely motivated, selfless, and anointed gift. This doesn’t mean, of course, that there is never a place for constructive criticism (It’s all about the source).
For today, I’ve kept the focus of this message on the simple framework provided by John 12 and the insight I received while studying it. Which was fresh to me—and I believe is a specific word for many.

Leave a Comment:
Has this post encouraged you in some way today? I’d love to hear from you, so leave your thoughts or prayer request in the comments box below.

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© 2022 Helen Calder, Enliven Blog

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48 thoughts on “God’s Favor FOR You is Greater Than Criticism Against You”

  1. Nancy Mahlase

    Good morning
    I’m in South Africa and trying to register for prophecy and discernment but your prices are in USD. Please help.

    1. Helen Calder

      Hi Nancy, the prices are quoted in USD, but are processed via your bank in local currency when you use the checkout process

  2. Barnabas Olusanya

    I don’t know what to say but I have to say thank you Lord. This blog post is for me I’m currently experiencing strong criticism for my obedience to God. But also alongside I’ve been favored like never before in my whole life I believe this is the opportunity for glory you spoke of. Also, the anointing of God on my life has been increasing greatly more recently despite the criticism.

    The ungodly ambition of darkness is also being revealed.

    In all this criticism God warns me to be still!

    I appreciate your ministry ma’am thanks for yielding to God.

    1. Helen Calder

      Hi Barnabas, I’m praying for you now, may you know the “grace upon grace” that is so abundant in Christ
      ” And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.” (John 1:16)

  3. Martha Kiende Mwithiga

    Thanks so much Hellen . This has healed me, I have been going through such in recent days, but I thank God that though criticized, I need to know it’s only God who matters in my life and he is actually my shield . The spirit of Judas must die in our ministries in Jesus name God bless you .

    1. Helen Calder

      Hi Martha, I pray you encounter His healing – that you’ll know it like balm washing all over you, separating and shielding you from the “stinger”, which has been disarmed! And amen to that…
      “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Rom 15:13)

  4. Praise King Jesus Helen,

    I bless the Lord for using you to share this timely message, I’m at the height of criticisms at home from my sister and other family members. at work with colleges who always speak negative against me, trying to make me look unproductive, and i ministry when I worship at church they have negative comments to say about my ministration or any input I add to the department.
    i recently assisted a friend on her introduction and wedding preparations and all she did was to rubbish my effort. i have taken all in prayer and believing God to bring me to people who will value all I have to offer. Mathew 7:6
    Jesus turn all the criticisms for your glory. Lift me up with your Grace and Glory.

    God bless you, keep you, make his face shine upon you, may his countenance rest upon you Woman of God.

    Tracy E.A

    1. Helen Calder

      Hi Tracy, I’m praying for you! This is your time to rise in your identity as a much-loved child of God, in confidence, in glory and faith.
      We agree together, that assignment that has come against Tracy repeatedly, be broken and canceled in Jesus’ Name

  5. Hi Helen. Thank you for this motivation. You are truly a God sent. Yes, we face criticism a lot as prayer warriors and we just have to put our focus on Jesus. I thank God for the anointing He put upon your life. Stay blessed

    1. Helen Calder

      thank you Zeldah,
      and yes! as prayer warriors it’s so important we know the joy of our calling and affirmation from the Father! The ministry is often little understood by others who are wired differently. 🙂

  6. Thank You, Jesus! You are faithful! No matter the circumstance, when Your people trust You, and You alone, NO WEAPON WILL PROSPER. We commit all of ourselves to You, the Redeemer, and we praise You in the hallway because we know You know what is ahead of us! Hallelujah that You are the Most Gracious Heavenly Father that will never let us down when we are trusting in You fully!

    Thank you, Helen, for your faithfulness to our Savior and His call on your life. You encourage many! The Lord has been speaking Isa 54 (last 3 verses) to me over the last few weeks. What a confirmation!

    Thank You, Lord, that we can look forward to what You are going to do next!

    1. Helen Calder

      Thank you, and I love that declaration, Rebecca! May everyone who reads this stop and declare Rebecca’s first paragraph above! Amen to that!

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