I don’t step on toes often. Toes are delicate things, and I am not a confrontational person by nature. But sometimes . . . sometimes something has to be said.
Here’s what I perceive to be the proverbial elephant in the room: this idea that it’s okay for believers to judge others but casually brush it off as “just joking” or “calling it as they see it” or ” pointing out the obvious.” When did it become okay to be mean?
Sidenote: When I point one finger at everyone else, the rest are pointing back at me! I’ve been guilty of this too, and I hate it. I don’t think the whole “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. (Luke 6:37) was something Jesus said in passing “if we felt like it.”
We’re especially guilty of this when it comes to public figures who aren’t believers and live outrageous lifestyles. When something detrimental happens to them, how quick are we to often quip, “Well, they got what they had coming to them.” or “That’s what you get.” Isn’t that the equivalent of Jesus’ parable of the tax collector and the pharisee (Luke 18:10-14), “For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted v 14).
Listen friends, this breaks my heart. Where’s the grace there? Where’s the compassion? It just seems like when we speak like this of others it’s because we lose sight of our own sad state without Christ. “But by the Grace of God go I,” said John Bradford.
I challenge us, friends, as fellow believers to have a heart and to remember this in Matthew 9:36 “When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.” Let’s be the real deal.