Saturday, January 9, 2010


"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

Today's Reading: Genesis 23-24: Matthew 7

This is one of those scriptures that touches a soft spot with me. Every time I read it I am sent into a sort of tailspin of irony. It’s amazing how this collection of words said so clearly and so directly seems to be so consistently ignored by Christian folk these days.

Maybe I’m being too harsh…

Well I’m definitely generalizing. There are many millions of Christian folk who are incredibly loving of other people, regardless of whether or not they agree with their values.

 But that’s not how it seems.

For a long time I focused on what I saw in the media and learned through my studies of history. I saw words and actions and policies and wars being waged by people who called themselves Christians. And I started to wonder to myself… if these folk are Christian, then what am I?

And then I read Jesus’ words above and I remembered some important things.

First: Part of being a Christian is to not be judgmental.

Second: When I judge folk that I have never met based on what I perceive about them from a distance I am no better a person than I assume they are.

Worst of all, I saw how when I judged them it made me question who I was at the very core.

That is unacceptable.

When we judge people we are giving them way too much power in our lives. Things become much simpler when we focus on removing the plank from our eyes; on doing the best that we can to be the best we can be. Often times it is the journey of doing the work necessary to remove the planks from our eyes that puts us in the position to have the love, knowledge, and experience to help others.

So then, when that same neighbor or friend comes to us asking for help, we can see clearly enough to offer a loving, helping hand rather than reaching out and poking them in the eye in the process. 

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A Convo With God by Clarence Mitchell III is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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