GRACE TO SEE THE LOG IN YOUR EYE - P8
“Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the log that is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother’s eye” (Luke 6:42).
In our lives as Believers, we all have different weaknesses and different temptations, different struggles and different trials. Even if we have the same trial as someone else, their situation and the grace God has given them will almost certainly be different (remember, we’re not talking about Salvation grace here).
In light of that, we should never assume we know what our Brothers or Sisters are going through. Unfortunately, we are often quick to judge one another because of our flawed human ideas about favor and blessing being merited—namely that we earn good things by our good works or good standing. When we see someone struggling or tempted or sad, our first reaction is, “This is their own fault” and we judge them – “How could they do that?” or “What is wrong with them?” or “If they just did this or that, they’d get over it.”
We may not realize that out of our grace-filled lives we may be judging their “sufficient-grace” lives. Grace is a gift from God for His purposes in your life, which we often don’t understand fully. Grace is unmerited, and it is what enables anyone to resist temptation, endure hardship, be successful, etc. So, people given less, or different, grace may struggle more with trials and temptations in their life.
I used to think gambling was the stupidest thing ever, and I judged people who struggled with it. But then I realized my Brothers and Sisters equally thought my personal struggles with other things made me foolish. And they judged me, just as I had judged others. “For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you” (Matt. 7:2), “therefore you have no excuse, everyone of you who passes judgment, for in that which you judge another, you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things” (Rom. 2:1). We all practice sin, but we like to judge others’ sins as worse.
We don’t like to see our own failings, but we have an eagle’s eye for everyone else’s. It is so true that “if we judged ourselves rightly, we would not be judged” (1 Cor. 11:31). But we so rarely judge ourselves rightly, and we often judge others wrongly. Concerning our sins, we’ll say, “I’m just having a bad day!” or “You provoked me!” But we’ve all looked at someone struggling with something and thought, “How could they do that?” or “How could they be like that!” Our first reaction is to see their fault, judge them in comparison to ourselves, and then try to “fix” them.
The truth is, we have to see from God’s eyes, not our own. We are instructed in God’s Word to show grace to one another – unmerited favor! No one deserves our understanding, kindness, support, strength, etc., but then neither do we! “Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear” (Eph. 4:29) — “Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person” (Col. 4:6), “for through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith” (Rom. 12:3).
If we judge ourselves rightly by the example of Jesus Christ, we are all failures, but failures saved by the unmerited grace of God’s Salvation. In God’s eyes, we are all undeserving of His grace, favor, and blessings. So, when we are preparing to judge someone else’s life, remember that it is the grace of God that has given us strength in the areas of their weakness – it is not of ourselves, so that we should boast, nor condemn them. Amen.