Judge not, that ye be not judged. – Matt. 7:1
Judge not the workings of his brain
And of his heart thou canst not see;
What looks to the dim eyes a stain,
In God’s pure light may only be
A scar, brought from some well-won field,
Where thou wouldst only faint and yield. – Adelaide A. Procter
Suzy has a rule about watching sports. She will never boo or criticize a college football player. They are not getting paid, and as she says those boys are some mother’s sons. The last two years of our Razorbacks have put her rule to the test. She also doesn’t always carry the rule forward to professional sports especially pro football.
No matter how hard we try it is hard not to judge, especially if the consequences have a direct effect on us. “Judge not” needs to become a mantra, but it is easy to slip. I write a column for www.clydefitchreport.com on the law and politics. It is difficult to distinguish between being critical or concerned about what is going on DC and not judging the individuals involved in the issue of the day. There is a fine line that needs to be drawn, and in my humble opinion too many of the talking heads go way beyond the issue to character assassination. But there I go already judging. See how hard it is.
Perhaps, Jesus and the poet Procter are reminding us to be alert — Alert and sensitive to a different point of view, a different perspective, and a frail human behind every action or words we find bothersome. I was given a huge gift by God when I went on sabbatical. I got to spend several years with people who came from different backgrounds, circumstances, and ethics than I had ever experienced. I learned a lot about seeing what our society judges as stains as indeed scars from a field I would have not survived.
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