ENTRY: How to Handle Haters Online

Entered by Zak Schmoll.

Being a Christian writer online is difficult. Behind the curtain of anonymity, people feel emboldened to make discouraging and often times disparaging remarks about a piece of writing that perhaps we spent hours molding to become something that would glorify God.

How do we respond to this type of criticism online? How do we interact with people who don’t want to hear anything we have to say before they start shouting?

We don’t need to figure this out on our own. The Bible is good for a lot of things, and it certainly can provide us with a few basic guidelines that we need to keep in mind as we interact online.

1. Don’t Be Surprised

If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. (John 15:18 KJV)

Although many of these attacks may be directed at us personally, we need to remember that we are ambassadors of God. In that position, we should not be surprised at all when people attack. Jesus predicted it, and He was right. People don’t always like to hear the Gospel, so as we bear that message, we should not be surprised if people get riled up.

2. Love Other People

Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. (1 Corinthians 13:1 KJV)

We don’t want our message to simply become empty noise. After all, we are carrying a message that we were commanded by Jesus himself in the Great Commission to bring to the world. Even if people are not very loving towards us, we need to remember that love is vital. We need to repay their belligerence with kindness. After all, we want to see them become brothers and sisters in Christ.

3. Persevere

Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, (Hebrews 12:1 KJV)

Even though it can be frustrating and even though it might not seem like all of our efforts are paying any type of dividend, we need to complete what we have started. If God has called you to write on the Internet like He has called me, then that is what you need to do. Jeremiah preached for a very long time with hardly any success, but he continued working at it. Don’t stop because of a few doubters. It will be worth it in the long run as we follow God’s calling.

***

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Lucy is a writer and editor based in the UK. She is author of Forgetful Heart: Remembering God in a Distracted World (2014) and Undivided Heart: Finding Meaning and Motivation in Christ (coming 2017) - both published by DLT books.

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Competition ClosesOctober 7th, 2013
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A blog post writing competition on the theme of Christian Writing in a Digital Age.

Entrants should write a blog post reflecting on the theme of no more than 450 words. Each post should include something to do with writing, something to do with faith and something to do with the digital age.

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