Most folks believe they’re good people, excusing failures because “I meant well.” After all, isn’t everyone an imperfect screw-up on occasion? If only we judged others the way we judge ourselves.
“Human nature seems to endow people with the ability to size up everybody in the world but themselves.” – John C. Maxwell
Everyone blows it. No one makes it from birth to death without making some seriously poor choices and hurting people they didn’t need to.
“But, I’m really a good person!”
Of course, you are! And so is everyone else, or at least they think so.
“I hurt your feelings? Well, I sure didn’t mean to.”
Translation: “So don’t blame me! It’s not my fault. Get over it already.”
Perspective is Unique, But Not Always Correct
Here’s the thing about perspective. I see a beam big enough to support an eight-story building in your eye, but pooh-pooh the little-bitty splinter in mine. On the flip side, you see a massive timber in my eye but the eight-story behemoth lodged in yours is but a mote of dust as far as you’re concerned.
“And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove the speck from your eye’; and look, a plank is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” – Matthew 7:3-5
The amazing thing about New Creations in Christ is how God makes it possible to overcome, to be better than our innate flawed human natures. Before denouncing the procrastinator, belittling the tardy, or pointing an accusing finger at someone else, let’s remember to do a post-prayer look in our magnifying mirror to see what stares back at us.
I’ve graduated to 7X and 10X magnifying mirrors because I don’t see as well as I used to. In some ways that’s a blessing. My mortal eyes aren’t as sharp as they were when I was younger, but neither is my tongue or tendency to judge what others do. Some limitations are blessings in disguise. Increasingly poor eyesight means we don’t see the wrinkles and shadows on our faces or those of others.
“We judge others by their behavior. We judge ourselves by our intentions.” ~ Ian Percy, double Olympic champion for Great Britain, 2000, 2008.
Yep, we humans are an interesting bunch. And yet, God loves us. Wrinkles, poor eyesight and all. And He is full of grace. Maybe that’s the lesson of this simple note.
Grace. Give it. Receive it. Be grateful for it.
All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes,
But the Lord weighs the spirits.
– Proverbs 16:2
Related post: The Truth About Truth
The Gospel Horse Series
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