We might think that criticising others is no big deal, it’s just showing people where they’re going wrong. But if we do it with the wrong heart and motives, it can lead to harm. Think about these four things: 1) God saw it as a sin when Aaron and Miriam criticised Moses for marrying an Ethiopian woman. Miriam came down with leprosy, and Aaron was quick to repent: ‘We have done foolishly…we have sinned.’ God healed Miriam, but not before she had been publicly embarrassed. 2) A critical attitude will hurt our relationships with others. ‘Then the Lord said to Moses, “…Let her be shut out of the camp seven days, and afterward she may be received again”’ (v.14 NKJV). Leprosy was contagious, and those who had it were isolated from others. There’s an important lesson here. If we become known for having a critical attitude, people will distance themselves from us and avoid us. It’s a trust issue; they know that if we’ll talk to them about others, we’ll talk to others about them. 3) A critical attitude holds everyone back. ‘So Miriam was shut out of the camp seven days, and the people did not journey till Miriam was brought in again’ (v.15 NKJV). One fault-finding person can destroy the effectiveness and hold back the progress of the entire group. 4) A critical attitude hurts our relationship with God. ‘Who may worship in your sanctuary, Lord? Who may enter your presence on your holy hill? Those who lead blameless lives and do what is right, speaking the truth from sincere hearts. Those who refuse to gossip or harm their neighbours or speak evil of their friends…Such people will stand firm forever’ (Psalm 15:1-3, 5 NLT).