Feeling judgmental? I struggle with that too, but feel thankful today that the Lord revealed my sin to me, for I lived decades without knowing it was my sin, without ever struggling against it. How badly do I struggle? I feel judgmental of judgmental people…sigh…
Knowledge of how God views judgmental spirits and obedience is part of the cure. Delving deeply into God’s Word to learn more about Him, not just listening to sermons, no matter how many, can help strengthen you and me for the fight against sin, whichever is our pet.
Matthew 21:28-32 adds a whole new twist to the problem of a judgmental spirit. Jesus was addressing the chief priests and elders in the temple when He taught them with this parable.
In summary, a man with two sons tells the first son to go to the vineyard to work today. The son answers, “I will not,” but later changes his heart and goes out to work. The father tells the second son to go work in the vineyard that day to which the second son replies, “I will, sir.” But he did not go.
verse 31 Which of the two did his father’s will?
When the chief priests and elders replied the first son, Jesus responded, “I tell you the truth, tax collectors and prostitutes go ahead of you into the kingdom of God!”
to consider which son best represents your heart. The first son or the second son?
Far too often, I am the son who says, “I will, sir” and yet I don’t.
Even worse, I want to judge the first son who verbally says no but then changes his heart and obeys. How often have I seen outward signs of rebellion in another and judged them? When I do, I am not allowing them the space and time which God allows for each of us to change our minds.
What was the old phrase from the 70’s? Be patient with me for God is not finished with me yet.
We need to engrave that phrase deeply in our hearts as we view those around us. I know I am thankful when I find a soul who views me knowing that God is not finished with me yet. They are an island or refuge on my journey where most people are constantly judging and viewing others for sin and outward signs of rebellion.
Back in the 80’s, my refuge person was Judy Holton. She instinctively saw me for who God created me to be, not judging me for the shallow immature person I was at the time. (and still am, but I have grown significantly from where I was in the 80’s) Thankfully, there are people today who also see me in the same light.
Which is why I strive/seek/aim/endeavor/strain/toil to see those around me in the same way. For if the people around me are still breathing, then we can be sure God is not finished with them yet either!