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A Love Letter to the Haters

General

Haters. We all have them. With what I do, I have a whole rolodex of them … but that doesn’t mean I have to call on them.

I never read comments on my blogs and articles published on-line, anymore. Yet, people will make verbal comments such as the other day following my recently published article in the Charlotte Observer. Someone walked up to me and said “Don’t pay attention to those mean comments. They were really tearing you up.”

Well, I wasn’t paying attention until you brought it to mine, thank you (not) very much. … why would someone do that anyway? That’s almost a passive aggressive insult!

Anyway, a few years and articles ago, I would have felt compelled to go see what people were saying about me. But I learned my lesson. Back in 2009 someone put something up about me on The Dirty.com. So naturally, I went to go read all the comments. I was happily surprised the majority of the comments were defending me. But like it really matters because you can get 5 compliments and only hear the one insult.

My good guy friend Drew let me know he was disappointed in me for reading the comments. Caring what other people think (good or bad) shows a lack of confidence, seeking it from without rather than within. He was so right; other people’s acceptance is irrelevant if you accept yourself.

Throughout my years working in the media I’ve read that I’ve got thunder thighs, I’m a talentless hack, I’m packing on the lbs, I am fake, I’m a racer chaser, I’m stupid, I look like Snooki, I’m a troll, I sleep my way into jobs …

All coming from people who have never so much as met me — let alone had I done something to them.

I could bark back and say, “Glad you have dial-up Internet in your parent’s basement” …but that would just put me on their level. I really just want to give them a hug.

Because haters are just people who need love. And Jesus.

If someone is so bored with their lives that they have time to spew negativity at a stranger, and feel better about themselves by making others feel bad … well, I just feel sorry for them. They need a hug more than recycled hate.

Besides, God is the only one who can judge you. Pastor Furtick from Elevation Church pointed out in a recent sermon that hypercritical people are just hypocritical people, projecting their own flaws and faults outwardly on others. They need to put down the magnifying glass and pick up a mirror!

So which one are you carrying? Because when it comes down to it, the only person’s approval you need is God’s and your own. Other people’s opinions don’t affect God’s opinion of you, so why let it affect yours?

I am by no means a Saint, I know I got lost in life and my motives went from wanting to help others, to wanting attention. I deserved to have haters at that point in my life. But just because someone casts judgment on your mistakes, doesn’t mean you have to cast yourself as the person they say you are.

I am just going to keep on doing what God has called me to do, because He gave me thick skin to do it with. I do what I do so that I have a voice, so I can speak up for others. And in this case, I’m speaking up for the haters … I’d like to start a “Hug a Hater” movement. When you hear someone hating, just give them a hug. They need it.

And like my friend Drew taught me, what other people think of you is not your business — so just go on about your business.