Let the refining and improving of your own life keep you so busy that you have little time to criticize others. H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
We are called to not judge other people….but we often forget that. Criticizing others can make us feel important or somehow”better than.” ‘m not thinking about the big things but the little everyday things like “why do she choose to wear that color” or “he always acts likes he’s in charge.” It is so easy to have these thoughts or make these comments.
God has told us to watch out about this. He has laid it on the line. If we do this then we will be judged also. We are better off cleaning up our own ideas and being careful to be kind. There is enough to clean up in ourselves to last us a lifetime.
Romans 15:1-2 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
15 We who are strong ought to put up with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves. 2 Each of us must please our neighbor for the good purpose of building up the neighbor.
How often do we look down on others for something they can’t help. So many who suffer from mental illness are thought of as “less than.” They may be functioning members of society fighting their demons every day but that is something we can’t see. It is so easy to be judgmental. Never presume weakness. It may actually be enormous strength that we can’t see.
A while back I wrote about how we can view something as a coincidence or a miracle. I told about one of my friends who says that the “arangels” are the organizers of wonderful happenings. These things are God moments.
My husband and I have some repairs to our house planned and have set aside money for this but you know how plans go. Another major repair came up and we didn’t plan for it. However, the arangels planned for my son and friends of his to take on the repair and we will only have to pay for parts. This is a God moment. It is a big job and my son scarcely has time with his own work schedule to take on anything else but he did.
Sometimes things happen that we can just call coincidence…things just falling into place…but I prefer to call them miracles.
I love this quote. It blames women for everything. I hope that is not what God intended. We do see Eve blame the whole thing on the snake. This may be one of the pieces of scripture that led men to see women as inferior. I plan to think more about this passage and see where it takes me. How about you?
The tendency to turn human judgments into divine commands makes religion one of the most dangerous forces in the world.” Georgia Harkness
It seems to me that more evil is done in the world in the name of religion than for any other reason. We automatically think of Islam and their fanatic suicide bombers. We tend to forget that Christianity has had its share of purges and killings. Too soon have we let the Inquisition fall from our memory. We become sure that we know what God wants and push our beliefs on everyone. Anyone who doesn’t agree is evil. This is not what Jesus taught.
Prayer: Lord God, there is so much hatred in the world. Help us to turn the face of love toward those who hate and teach them about your love. Amen
It is so easy to make snap judgments about others. Today I did a mediation. My initial thoughts had we favoring one side. I always have to shove these thoughts aside and wait to hear the whole story. The whole story is the answer and we don’t often know it. We judge without understanding. Judging is not up to us. Understanding is.
My daily meditation will be on the Psalms for a while. I hope you find this meaningful.
Psalm 1 verse 1 from the NRSV
Happy are those
who do not follow the advice of the wicked,
or take the path that sinners tread,
or sit in the seat of scoffers;
I was struck by the word “scoffers.” How often do we put down the ideas of others without really considering them. Sometimes we are not rejecting the ideas but the people themselves. We do not even hear them out or consider what they would mean. Think about this attitude and hear others out.
Gracious Lord, help us to listen with open mind and heart and not scoff but HEAR. AMEN
This is so true that it is scary. We are the person who get ourselves into trouble. We are the person who doesn’t follow the path of Jesus. We are the one who passes by the homeless person on the street. We are the person who judges others. We are the person who tells malicious stories about our acquaintances. We would like to blame someone else but we can’t.
We HAVE met the enemy and he is us!
Loving God, help us to take the log out of our own eye. Remind us that what we hate most is others is frequently one of our own failings. Teach us to love. Forgive us and grant us your mercy. AMEN
Forbear to judge, for we are sinners all. ————William Shakespeare
It is so easy for us to judge others. Gossip is usually some form of judgement. Often the things we are quickest to judge in others is the one we don’t see in ourselves. We have not walked in another person’s shoes. We don’t know the whole story. No judgement!
Forgiving God, remind us that we too are often wrong and quick to judge. Help us to walk with compassion and love. AMEN
Difference of rite ought not to involve differences of faith-———Christopher Dawson
Sometimes I think that we spend as much or more time pointing out the flaws of other denominations that we do about other religions. Some feel that their path is the only one and want to be sure that everyone else is wrong.
God is so far beyond out understanding that none of us can claim to have the only truth. Don’t waste time putting down others.
Gracious Lord, remind us to mind our own search for you and not someone else’s. AMEN