Plain sight? (11.04.21–Don't Judge! –Luke 6:37)
My friend, may I ask you a question? How often things just aren't what they seem, especially when we're looking to justify how we feel things ought or ought not to be?
My friend, Life’s a story, welcome to This Passing Day.
I'm M. Clifford Brunner.
If you're like me you've often wondered: "why people do things the way they do." We're all afflicted with that particular character trait: the ability to be critical based on how WE would have done something. Sometimes it's big things that we compare, like how we would have designed something or said something different to avoid embarrassment or shame. Most often, however, it's the small thing that preoccupies the comparison. For example, there was that pickup truck that wanted to make a left-hand turn in front of me yesterday. There he sat in the middle of the road and I couldn't figure out why he'd stopped. I slowed down but he just sat there, obviously wanting to turn across my oncoming lane. So I sped up muttering to myself that a turn signal would have helped. "How rude!" As I passed I looked into my rearview mirror; I suppose to justify my moment of irritation. Oops! His turn signal WAS on. Evidently his front signal had burned out. Perhaps if I had assumed that in the first place, I would have avoided the irritation.
I had made a snap judgment that was totally off base. How often things just aren't what they seem, especially when we're looking to justify how we feel things ought or ought not to be.
Here's a story: While on a walk one day, a country parson was surprised to see a man hoeing his garden while sitting in a chair. He slowed down to take the sight in a bit and the older gentleman looked up and smiled innocently. "What laziness!" the parson thought. "If you're going to use a hoe you ought to know you should stand." He shook his head and sped up a bit unwilling to catch the man's glance. But suddenly, out of the corner of his eye, he saw, leaning against his chair, a pair of crutches. The man was at work despite his handicap. It was at that moment that a rush of embarrassing shame flooded over the parson as he looked down at his shuffling feet. Moral of the story: Snap judgments can be very blinding–hiding the crosses people bear that are seldom in plain sight. (Author unknown. If anyone has a proprietary interest in this story please authenticate and I will be happy to credit, or remove, as the circumstances dictate.)
The Bible warns us: "Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven" (Luke 6:37). You know, the best part of that passage is the "forgiving" part. You need it and I need it. We won't get it when we aren't willing to give it. When we adopt a forgiving spirit, always careful not to judge before we forgive, we avoid shame and embarrassment. And, even more important, snap judgments often hide the truth that may be in plain sight . . . if only we're willing to look for it in the first place.
We pray. Heavenly Father, Your Word tells us that we are not to condemn, and you will not be condemned. We are to forgive, and we will be forgiven.” By Your Spirit help us to be reminded that we need to forgive others if we are to be forgiven. We won't get it when we aren't willing to give it. Forgive us Father when we don’t adopt a forgiving spirit, not always careful not to judge before we forgive. Help us Lord to avoid snap judgments which often hide the truth that may be in plain sight . . . if only we're willing to look for it in the first place. In Jesus name we pray. Amen!
Therefore my friend, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry for itself; each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matt 6:34) This Passing Day. May this passing day honor our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and be a blessing to you and everyone you meet. Find a stranger and say hello. Don't let another day pass without your day blessing someone else.
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<firstname.lastname@example.org> From Beech Springs, God bless you for Jesus sake.