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the sharpshooter

you cannot do

you are nothing




prone to failure

judge and jury

exist to execute

the inner critic finds my insecurities

and amplifies them

for the glory

of the open wound

I am the victim of harsh inner critics. Not only do I have a biting inner monologue, I also am in possession of voices, (due to my schizophrenia) that are violently belittling towards me and my choices/actions in life. These voices have a razor's edge ability to discern qualities of my person that I am self-conscious of and then use these perceived failings against me. They are piercing to the core.

But I do not consider myself alone. While many of you may not have voices that are not your own working against you, I am confident there are those who can relate to the negative inner monologue. It has been said we are often our own worst judges. I believe this to be true.

As a result of illness and general sensitivities, in the past I have seen therapists in my quest for mental wellness. There have been insights and pieces of advice that have been particularly useful. One such advisement was the question "would you talk to your friends the way you talk to yourself?" The answer, of course, is a resounding "no." If I talked to others the way I speak to myself, I would have no friends.

This brings me to the concept of grace. We need grace in our lives. I believe it is as necessary to extend grace to our own selves as it is to show it to others. This world would be a horrible place to live, were there an absence of grace or forgiveness. Just as we forgive those we love for their transgressions against us, we should forgive ourselves for mistakes we make, intentional or not. Please read this blog as an acknowledgement of the existence of the inner critic, and then as an exhortation to extend a small measure of grace to yourself in a rebellion against that demon.

Joshua Wiebe

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