Scripture: James 2:
12Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, 13because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment!
Observation: Judgmental people are sinful people.
Application: Judgmental attitudes seeps into our lives discreetly with more palpable words and phrases like, “I don’t judge them, I just don’t agree with what they’re doing.” That’s a good innocent and even righteous attitude isn’t it? We are supposed to separate ourselves from the world aren’t we? We are supposed to know the difference between right and wrong aren’t we? These are phrases and thoughts that can tear the love right out of a church, or an individual.
We are to regulate our own actions, and live our lives in obediance to God – but if someone else has a different idea than we do about what is right and wrong, we far too often, appoint ourselves as their teachers to show them the errors of their ways and of their thoughts. And our approach in doing so is a judgemental approach more often than it is a loving and compassionate one.
If we would truly focus on ironing out the wrinkles in our own lives, and just living a life of love and compassion to everyone else, even those that are hard to love, we would simply have no time to look for faults in others around us. Our Churches are full of congregations that share the same background, race, language, history, many times even same ancestors – and we wonder why we can’t get new people in the congregation. We don’t really want people around who may challenge our long standing traditions and the comfort of the boxes we live in. If we truly understood these words of James, we wouldn’t be thinking bad about any differing group of people, but would rather reach out to all in love. It IS just that simple Church. Love and compassion for one another, mercy and not judgement is what will save the Church thats sinking in the vast ocean of the modern world, and only these things can sustain even those select congregations that are standing firmly. Don’t forget our foundations are built on the Rock – and the Rock stands by Love!
Prayer: God of Mercy,
Thank you for your forgiveness, thank you for your grace, thank you for your Son Jesus who paid the penalty for my sins. Help me to never be judgmental and to always show mercy to everyone I encounter, and to welcome all regardless of who they are into your presence and into mine.