Hello, Freeing Imperfections readers! My name is Danica and I’m the author behind the healthy living blog It’s Progression, where I write about all kinds of random things about my life (with an extra focus on food and fitness – because I love both of those things dearly).
Thanks so much to Melissa for inviting me to guest post today!
Today’s topic may make some people feel uncomfortable, guilt-ridden, or even defensive.
It’s about something we are ALL guilty of – myself absolutely included.
This verse will lead us into that discussion:
There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor?
My topic is judgment.
We judge people every day…I’m sure at least one of you may be thinking “oh no! me?! No no no, I don’t judge. I’m sweet and caring and I’m a Christian. No, I would never do such a thing.”
I may be wrong with this, but it’d be a miracle if you really were exempt from displays of judgment. But, if you were one of the people that actually thought this in your head, I encourage you to reevaluate your heart right now and know that it’s okay to admit (even if *just* to yourself and to the Lord) that you judge when you shouldn’t.
It’s our sinful, human nature to judge other people. It’s our flesh.
Here are a few examples of thoughts you’ve maybe had, or words you’ve even spoken:
- Why on earth would she wear that?
- Did they really just let their child do that?
- What’s wrong with them?
- Well isn’t her life just perfect… (<-said sarcastically.)
- Based solely on one look – well someone is having a bad day!
- Why weren’t they at church this weekend?
- They went to college for what?!
- They live where?
- They eat/don’t eat ______??
- They think they have it so difficult… (<-sarcastic font again.)
And so on…
These sentences sound weird to read in this context, but unfortunately, they don’t seem so strange when we say them spontaneously to ourselves throughout the busyness of everyday life.
I’m guilty of thinking many judgmental thoughts each day, but I’ve been working on changing my mindset for quite a while now, and I can tell that I’m becoming much less judgmental than I used to be.
Matthew 7:1-5 says this:
“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.”
I’ve also been on the receiving end of judgment many times, as I know all of you have been too, and it’s just a terrible feeling.
One I’ve recently struggled with is receiving this comment, or something along the lines of: “you’re just too darn skinny.”
This sentence was recently said to me when I said out loud that I was kind of cold…The comment is completely false anyway – I take great care of my health, because taking care of this temporary home God gave me is extremely important to me – but the comment used to really bother me.
The person who said that doesn’t know my background – they don’t know what my health history has been, what my eating habits were and are, what my daily lifestyle looks like now – they don’t know anything about my health or my weight. Yet they felt that they knew enough to make a comment like that.
If someone said they were warm and I replied with “well, if you weren’t so darn fat!” that would probably be taken as offensive, right?! (the answer is: of course. and no, I would never say that.)
Now a comment like that doesn’t bother me, because I now know that anyone who makes comments like that is actually struggling with his/her own insecure feelings of self-confidence, self-esteem, etc.
Which brings me to my ultimate point of all of this – we have absolutely no right to judge other people.
It is God’s job to judge, and it’s our job to love.
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
Our judgments don’t matter for anything, except that they surely don’t pull us any closer to the Lord. Loving his people, of all differences and in all walks of life – that’s what we’re supposed to be here on this earth for…to show HIS love to ALL people.
Do to others as you would have them do to you.
The golden rule plays a significant role here. It feels terrible to be unfairly judged, which is exactly what we should remember when we judge another person.
When I catch myself judging others, I’ve sort of “trained” myslef to immediately remind myself that that person has a story – every person has a story – and I don’t know their whole story. No one knows but that person, and so I have no excuse to judge that person’s actions.
It’s not my job to make this judgment…
Behind every person, there’s a story…a reason why they are the way they are…and that person is just living the best life they know how to…so who are we to give it a value.
I’m going to end with a few quotes I love about this topic:
- As I let go of self-judgment, I find it easier to let go of all judgment.
- so true:
- Be curious, not judgmental. –Walt Whitman
- As a teacher, this one just makes my heart flutter:
- You can’t change how people treat you or what they say about you. All you can do is change how you react to it.
- Bloggers can especially relate to this one: Don’t judge people – you only get to see what they choose to show you.
- And my absolute favorite, the true takeaway I want us to have from this:
Judgment is the opposite of compassion.
And we are all called to be compassionate.
What are your thoughts on judgement or being judged?