Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Judge Not

When I decided I wanted to be a better person, I knew one thing I would have to get rid of was judging others.  It seemed almost impossible to me. Judging is seen as part of the fabric of our society; it’s totally acceptable to bash someone on tv, to a friend, or even type it out for the whole world to see. It was hard to imagine that something so prevalent could actually be overcome. And I would be lying if I didn’t say that judging had become a way of life for me, how I looked at the world, and how I viewed other people.

My Savior knew my heart, my desire to be good. He knew I was finally ready to change. He let me in on a little secret: it all starts in your mind. That old adage that you crosstitched as a kid was true: sow a thought and you reap an action, sow an act and you reap a habit, sow a habit and you reap a character, sow a character and you reap a destiny (thanks Ralph Waldo Emerson).

It’s been hard, but wow it’s made a world of difference. Instead of seeing someone’s shoes and making a snap judgment, or reading something and drawing immediate conclusions, I try to step back. A couple realizations have really helped me in my quest to be judgment-free. First, the better you know someone, the more likely you are to think kindly of them. I realized that a lot of the judgments I make are simply because I don’t really know the person and was making assumptions about them. Which brings me to the second thing I realized: there’s no one you know well enough (besides yourself) to adequately judge what’s going on inside their head.

To stop saying judgmental things is a good idea, but to actually stop thinking them altogether is going to change who I am. Our Savior Jesus Christ, who knows us better than we know ourselves, who knows our motives and our secret sins, still responds with kindness. He says to us, “Neither do I condemn thee: go and sin no more.” And that’s what I want to do.

1 comment:

  1. Very nicely put! That's something I've been working on as well. Glad to know I'm not the only one. :)