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I am judgmental. In my last confession I confessed that I can be a real hypocrite, but that I started viewing others with more grace when I finally realized the depth of my own sin and the true condition of my heart.
Unfortunately, that newfound grace did not translate very well to people within the church. People who, from the outside looking in, seemed to be the “perfect” Christians (whatever that means). I saw them every week, rushing to the Bible class they taught, or the small group they led, and I felt the weight of unspoken expectations and questions of why I wasn’t “involved” fall on my shoulders, and I judged them for judging me. Whether the judgment I felt was real or perceived, who knows? And it’s not really the point. The point is I had traded one judgmental attitude for another! In turning off my judgment of fellow sinners, I found a new, more zealous judgment for people who were followers of Jesus.
The thing is, judgment is like kidney stones. They’re pretty easy to pass, but painful for everyone involved. And once they’ve been in your system, it’s really hard to keep them from coming back. I thought I had conquered my judgmental thoughts, only to have them boomerang back with a new target.
It was an ugly attitude that ultimately led to a season of isolation and loneliness, because everyone was “too judgey” to befriend. I look back now and realize I was the judgmental one. Once I got to know those people, I realized they hadn’t been judging me at all, and it was my own perceptions and judgments that had gotten in the way. Again!
Now…about all of you Christians who have all the answers, don’t get me started! 🙂 Just kidding!
Have you ever felt judged by someone–and responded with judgement? Did it turn out well?