Matt. 7:1 "Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged."
I cannot count how many times have I read the above scripture. I knew that the bible taught not to judge anyone, but did that include when I looked at someone who wore clothes not up to my standard? Or how about when someone cussed (as if I didn’t cuss)? I had to practice learning not to judge anyone through the power of the Holy Spirit after fully turning my heart to the Lord. Curbing my tongue has been a task in and of itself! Where is the masking tape?
The year was 2001, and a friend of mine handed me a monthly newsletter by David Wilkerson, author, Cross and the Switchblade/ Church planter of New York Times Square Church. In it, he recounted a story that I continue to recall when the temptation to judge tries to overtake me.
He recounts his story of being on the mission field and, while heading to his destination, found himself sitting in the back of a taxi with two other individuals. The taxi driver (if memory serves me well) said something untoward, which caused him to roll his eyes in disgust. Almost immediately, the Holy Spirit conveyed to him that he had just unknowingly judged the man and that he was never to do that again. My first thought was what a humble man he must be to receive such a stern rebuke and follow the instructions. The Spirit of the Lord has used his story every time I heard someone say something odd, off-color, or off-putting. I would catch myself recalling the rolling eyeballs. It has always been a come to Jesus at the cross meeting!
Fast forward to this past summer, (knowing I had the eyeball thing under control) I happened (?) to see a commercial advertising Tom Hanks in the role of Fred Rogers. I thought to myself, Tom Hanks portraying Mr. Rogers (Come on! Was this an eyeball judgment moment?). I almost immediately located a documentary about Fred Rogers. What caught me off guard, first, was that Michael Keaton appeared and began to narrate (Who knew he worked for Mr. Rogers for the first few years of his career?). The story of his life was spell-bounding. It wasn't too long after I finished processing the documentary, maybe several hours, that I went to the Lord, knelt and repented (means I am going to turn and go in another direction!) for making fun of Fred Rogers most of my adulthood. Was I judging again, Molly? Eyeballs!
Take a listen, will you, to the Mr. Rogers podcast at Jesuswithoutthejunk.com or go to Podbean.com (type in Jesus Without The Junk) and download the app to your phone. It is easy listening! I think you will enjoy the message and if nothing else, you will enjoy Mandy's singing.
God bless you and remember the rolling eyeballs! Also, it is never too late in life to learn.
"Pray hard and listen well."