June 22, 2020

Gospel MT 7:1-5

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Stop judging, that you may not be judged.
For as you judge, so will you be judged,
and the measure with which you measure will be measured out to you.
Why do you notice the splinter in your brother’s eye,
but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own eye?
How can you say to your brother,
‘Let me remove that splinter from your eye,’
while the wooden beam is in your eye?
You hypocrite, remove the wooden beam from your eye first;
then you will see clearly
to remove the splinter from your brother’s eye.”

Reflection

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Stop judging, that you may not be judged.
For as you judge, so will you be judged…..”

If I was asked whether I consider myself to be judgmental, my immediate response would be to say, “No.”

Yet, if I take the time to do even a little “self” examination, the truth is I am constantly making either positive or negative judgements of others.

Too often, my manner of interacting with (or avoiding) a person is determined by my initial “snap judgement,” based on whether or not I find the person “likable.”

I rationalize my tendency to judge; Jesus said, “Love one another.” He did not say “like” one another.

I tell myself that I don’t discriminate; I would help a person who needed help, regardless of whether I liked them or not.
But, Jesus did not say, “For as you ‘serve’ you will be judged.”

He said, “For as you ‘judge’ you will be judged and the measure with which you measure will be measured out to you.”

The hard truth is that I do judge others and many times, too quickly.

Only God knows a person’s heart and mind. If I hope for a merciful judgement and “measure” from God, I must work harder to have a more merciful, non-judgmental heart.

“Why do you notice the splinter in your brother’s eye,
but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own eye?
How can you say to your brother,
‘Let me remove that splinter from your eye,’
while the wooden beam is in your eye?
You hypocrite, remove the wooden beam from your eye first;
then you will see clearly
to remove the splinter from your brother’s eye.”

Jesus calls those who see the faults of others but are blind to their own faults “hypocrite.” Originally the word hypocrite was used to describe actors. A hypocrite is someone who pretends to be someone they are not.

The beginning of knowing one’s self (seeing myself as God sees me) is “honest” self-examination.

Can I see the “plank” in my own eye?

Am I prepared to do the work and ask God for help to remove it?

“Judging a person does not define who they are. It defines who you are.” Unknown