Pastoral Ponderings – September, 2022
Look Into The Mirror
We humans are an amazing species. Created by God and living lives as varied as He can imagine, we can be witty, kind, giving, warm, humorous, gentle and we can also be vindictive, short-sighted, unforgiving, impatient and even judgmental. It is the last item mentioned that I want to focus upon in this writing. We can be so very judgmental about situations and other people-especially their motives. We can often find ourselves asking the question, “Why did he do that?” or “Whatever made her think that would be alright?” And we judge others so often and with such efficiency that we can sometimes fail to even realize we are doing it. This month I suggest that we take a closer look at something I call “introspection”, looking at ourselves and try to view US and our behavior when it comes to judging others and delve a little into why we behave as we do and why we judge as we do then perhaps being more cognizant of our judging, try to alter our behavior. I am suggesting an honest, no holds barred look into the mirror.
Jesus talks about repentance and changing our behavior to treat others better in the spirit of loving and selfless service. Often He points out to those He encounters the errors or sins of their lives and then encourages them to go and sin no more. But in order for any of us mere mortals to change our behavior and in this particular instance, our “judging of others” we first need to be aware of it as it is happening and then we must be willing to move forward in a true desire to make changes. Instead of leaping to judgmental conclusions about others, let us first ask ourselves why we react as we do to those we wish to judge. What inside us is broken or is lacking that causes us to stray from the path Jesus calls us to follow? What is wrong within US that causes us to view or judge others with the harshness of callousness, indifference, or resentment? The process of looking into that mirror may not be an easy task, but it is a vital step in discerning how close or far away we have strayed from our Christian calling.
Let us take the opportunity to explore why we behave as we do and learn more about what triggers our tendency to judge others so quickly and perhaps unfairly. Let us take the time to look within and to deal with the log within our own eye and not so much upon the splinter in the eye of another. Let us look into the mirror and depending upon what we see, take the first steps in changing our behavior and putting ourselves back on the path Jesus has set before us. It is a journey well worth the effort!