The sermon at church the other day was on Matthew 7:1 "Judge not, that you be not judged."
That seems like a simple directive, does it not? However, everyone (I assume) does it. I know I certainly have...do...will. It's not something I'm proud of! And it's certainly not something I want to continue to do. If I could slap my brain around and tell it to be nice all the time, I certainly would. But it's a heart thing really. Insecurities rise. Jealousy pops up. Ignorance is rampant. The list could go on. The saying "Don't judge a book by its cover" sounds so cliche, right? But it can be applied to any human being walking this earth. We don't know what every person is going through. We don't know what triumphs or let downs or heartbreaks have just occurred. I want to become more aware and cognizant of what my heart is telling my brain to think.
The pastor broke judgement down into steps:
1. We find something about them we don't like.
2. We examine the externals. (Because that's all we have.)
3. We form critical opinions.
4. We jump to inaccurate conclusions. (Have you ever been wrong about anyone?)
5. We stick a label on them.
6. We share our feelings with others. (Gossip, busy-bodies.)
He also said, "This all has to do with bullying. Who DO you like, then?"
Even if I just thought these things, it's still a form of bullying...which goes back to the heart thing. What makes me so darn special? I bet people think the same things about me. Judge, and you will be judged. Full circle of bad choices right there!!!
What to do instead.
1. Stop making a judgement on appearances. (You never know all the facts.)
2. Listening is more important than talking. (You were given 2 ears, 1 mouth. Listen twice as much as you talk.)
3. You never know all the hidden motives.
Judging is disobeying the clear command of Christ. Whether you're a Christian or not, judging is never a good choice. It certainly doesn't make you a better person.
How can we break this habit?
1. Examine yourself before you examine others. 2 Corinthians 13:5
2. "How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the plank in your own eye?" Matthew 7:4
The pastor asked a rhetorical question: What are YOUR planks?
Well mine would be:
- And apparently Judging others
3. Confess your own faults before confronting others with theirs.
It's easy to judge. We're all different. We all love different things. And how boring would the world be if we were all made from the same cookie cutter? I want to learn more stories, rather than making up my own version or dismissing the stories altogether. Time to keep my mouth shut and heart open! #idontwanttobeajerk #justahappyreminder
Have you ever been judged? Have you ever done the judging? What did you learn from either experience?
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