Judgment and Generosity
“For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.” (Matthew 7:2, NASB)
I love working picture puzzles. They are good for strengthening us cognitively and helping us pay attention to detail. I have a method I use to work them: first I scan the picture and circle every detail the directions tell me to find. Seldom do I get them all or even come close on the first try. It takes me several more intentional and patient looks before I get everything in the picture. This teaching of Jesus’ reminds me of my picture puzzles. At first glance we might not comprehend the fullness of what Jesus is instructing his followers. We know it has something to do with judging—or not judging others—but what we might miss until we meditate on it—is the way we judge others is the same way the Father judges us. Whatever “measurement” of generosity or lack thereof we use in judging others is the same measurement the Father uses to judge us.
Its so easy to judge others based upon outward appearances, based upon what others have said or we have heard through the grapevine, based upon a few conversations, based upon the way we knew someone to be in the past, based upon some very shallow and unsubstantial things. We do that and may not give much thought to it. But that might change if we considered the same way we judge others is the same way God will judge us. I’d hate to think God would judge me based upon my past, my outward actions instead of looking at my heart. Based upon the words I say instead of what I really wanted to say or communicate. Based upon someone else’s initial opinion about me. God intends this to be a sobering and behavioral change for those who belong to him.
When we feel inclined to judge for any reason may we be encouraged to judge with all consideration, immeasurable kindness, compassion, understanding, mercy, and grace. Remembering the measure we use to judge will be the same measure God uses to judge us. Let’s Pray,
Dear God, because you view us through the cross of Jesus we are spared judgment that would otherwise condemn us. Grant that we will do the same towards others and in return experience your generosity and grace. Because we do not want to be judged harshly or without loving consideration may we do likewise when it comes to others. Amen
Questions for Soul-Tending
How does what Jesus taught about judging others and God’s judgment of us give you pause?
Are there some you have judged one way in the past that you would like to alter your thoughts or attitude?
How will you incorporate todays fcus on judging others into your plan of soul-care?