“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
(Matthew 7:1-5 NIV)
I sat down next to my wife in Sunday school class, my favorite time in church, after passing out lessons for the teacher.
The lesson that day was about Judgment of others. I love our Lord’s words on this subject in Matthew 7. It speaks to a fault I have long worked on correcting. Evidently, others in the class needed work in that area, too. I truly believe, if one can apply this practice in their everyday life, leaving judgment to our Father can be an incredibly powerful tool in the conversion of others, as well as uplifting to fellow Christians.
After class, we stood in groups talking. Either, I missed something in the message or the others did. Judgment to the right of me, judgment to the left of me, into the valley of judgment we charged. I derided them mentally. I was superior due to understanding the message and recognizing the others had heard the message, but, alas, in a brief period of time had forgotten. In point of fact, I think they had simply refused to practice what our Lord specifically said not to do. I rode my high horse hard that day.
Monday morning at work, perhaps five minutes, I begin my judgment of others with a colleague. How self righteous, how haughty, how full of myself! I realized what I was doing almost immediately. The act was already performed. I should have left for the doctor’s office to get the plank removed from my eye.
I have a long journey to the point that I am not judgmental. I suppose recognizing your fault is the first step. I pray for redemption from this horrible malady. Our Lord wants to help us. I know I cannot do it alone. Whenever, I ask him for that help, his face takes on a stern, yet loving, expression. He puts his arm around me and shakes his head slowly. Surely, I am a strain on his patience many, many times.
The great part of the story is this: he still loves me without condition, and I love him without condition with all my heart and all my soul and all my mind. Amen
Just another day in the life of a Christian, struggling to fit into his new self.