We all know that judging people is not a wise thing to do.
We all know that Jesus came and died on the cross not to judge the world, but to save the world. (John 3:17)
The real problem is we continue to judge ourselves. Most of the time if someone is judging someone else, they are typically saying the same things to themselves in the dark corners of their own mind, in front of the mirror, when nobody else can see or hear.
It took me a long time to get to the point where I didn’t hate myself every time I looked in the mirror. From old thoughts ringing loudly in my mind, to names that I had been called growing up, to finally the pressures of what I felt a Christian wife and mother should act like, it was difficult to escape my own tormenting thoughts. Some days were harder than others to overcome the negative self talk I had been accustomed to.
Sometimes we cling to those thoughts like a security blanket thinking if we let them go then maybe we are letting go of the salvation we have earned through our good works….oh wait never mind , we never earned anything, my bad.
But seriously, why do we cling to this pattern of thinking that is not only self-destructive, but also destroying our relationships?
When Jesus said to get the plank out of our own eye so that we can see to remove the speck from our brother’s eye, maybe the very act of being aware of our own sins, and God’s grace and & mercy in our own lives, would be enough for us to stop judging our brother who has a minor speck in their eye. (Matthew 7:5)
Maybe if we stop judging them then we could help them to see who they are in Christ! Maybe if we had a little more self-awareness then we could stop judging ourselves…I mean it’s only one eye, and it’s only a plank, it could be much worse.
There was so much wisdom and love in what Jesus did in His time here on earth, and there was so much grace and mercy in what He didn’t say or do.
I love how we don’t know everything Jesus did and didn’t do. But what I love most is knowing some of the things he did, and didn’t do. There seems to be one simple theme running throughout the story of Jesus’ life, and that was He was full of mercy and grace for those who were humble, and merciful & gracious to others. The hardest thing the LORD could accept was the hypocrisy of the Pharisees.
The thing is, a lot of us are still living under the oppression of someone else judging us, but we also live under the pain of our own self-judgement.
When we are constantly condemning ourselves for what we have done in the past, or for our weaknesses and failures, we often find ourselves struggling to keep our thoughts and feelings in check about those closest to us. It’s easy to judge someone else, but it’s even easier when we live under self-judgement on a daily basis.
But the LORD said that His grace is sufficient. Paul had a flaw, or a weakness, probably something he loathed about himself. We don’t really know what it was, but we do know that he never had to carry the burden alone, the LORD was with him and gave him grace to fill in the times when he was weak. (2 Corinthians 12:9)Whatever drives our own self-judgment is going to be what drives our judgmental heart towards other people.
Also, it is difficult to rise above being judged when we are constantly doubting ourselves, and we are unable to accept who we are in Christ.
Sometimes I struggle with keeping my cool, and over time I have found that my anger is easily tipped when I am starting to doubt myself.
For me 2016 is a reminder to believe. Over the months gone by I have simply forgotten what I believed about myself, but also God. I have forgotten the person He created me to be, and I have forgotten Who He was to me.
So many things have caused me to doubt, and sometimes it was because I was listening to the wrong people and sometimes it was because I had simply forgotten God’s Word, His promises, and His sacrifice.
Why does believing in who we are in Christ, and simply believing God, matter? It matters because so many words, thoughts, well-meaning people, pride, lust, sin and more will come for our hearts. Every day, every hour, every minute. We will need to decide what we believe, first about God, then ourselves, and lastly what we believe about those around us.
How we view God and ourselves is going to affect how we view others.
Self-judgement is the core issue behind a heart that is judgmental towards others.
It is so important to guard our heart from the damage of self-judgement so that we can protect others from our judgmental heart.
It’s a lot easier to be loving and compassionate towards others, like we are called to do, when we are allowing the LORD to flood our hearts with His love, grace, compassion, and mercy.
But this can only be done when we are willing to confess our sin to Him and let the blood of Jesus heal our hearts. If we don’t then we will never find the healing we need in order to stop judging ourselves, and others!
Eternal salvation happens in a moment of confessing that Jesus is the son of God, but sanctification happens on a daily basis, moment by moment, thought by thought. Jesus died on the cross one day, rose from the dead three days later, and yet He gave us the gift of the Holy Spirit to help us every day we walk this earth.
He must have known we were going to need the help of The Helper, every single day…maybe we need to stop judging ourselves, and start walking in the Spirit.