(10) judge not

“Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. For you will be treated as you treat others.The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.” (Jesus, from Mt. 7 NLT)

“Notice how many times today you are disappointed with yourself and others. What standards are you measuring everything against? How are these standards affecting you and the people in your life?” (From The Wisdom of the Enneagram, 110)

I sense this will be a lifelong class for me, the course of judging not, releasing from judgment, acceptance. I recognize how important it is, again, when I feel the harshness of my anger warming up, red hot. Too much potential for searing people, scarring them, destroying relationships in a fiery blaze, burning myself in the process. You will be treated as you treat others. “How do you like them apples?”

Of course, there is something specific on my mind this morning. Perhaps too private for the wide world, yet too constant, repetitive, to ignore. I am ashamed of my fiery tendency to pass judgment when I am only called, empowered, to love, to embrace.

Judge not… How well do you love, Anna? Have you mastered the love that Jesus modeled? Surely not, surely not yet, not even close to that depth, that consistence, not even with the one I love most. Then, dare you pass judgment about choices, decisions, moods, behaviors?

Intriguing that the one human being fully entitled to pass judgment instead chose to change lives by loving without conditions, embracing the other with untainted acceptance. Will you take up that challenge, dear one? Will you practice release and acceptance-with-joy (Hinds’ Feet, H. Hurnard), embracing completely?

It seems that, even in marriage as the two become one, the two also remain two. Called to live in rhythm with the other, yet still unique, distinct, different hearts, different desires, different needs. The class of judge not and of acceptance-with-joy is more intimate here, and exceedingly more immediate and crucial. Let me learn from you, Jesus.

*****

I wonder, is gratefulness the trick here as well? Not to imply, of course, that there is a one-trick-solves-all sort of solution. It is, after all, a process (groan) and not a quick fix. But is it possible that I have too much space in my mind and heart for doubting and judging and discontent because I am empty of thanks? Maybe I too need to start a list of a 1000 moments of giving thanks.

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