I used to judge people’s actions. I used to hate people and make careless actions just because they cannot meet my standard of work. I punished them, I spoke ill about them, and to sum it all up—my heart becomes heavy just looking at their incapability to do things the way expected them to.
I have always thought that the problem is the people itself—because they cannot perform well.
What a complicated life it is! Raising eyebrows to people who cannot do their job perfectly, hating people for learning things slow, and constant disappointment to things, situations, and people just because they do not turn out the way I imagined them.
Let me tell you a story,
I, Arabella Marie had this encounter with Lord that changed not only the way I see my neighbour but also the way I see myself. When I was struggling keeping up with the movement of life, online class, relationships, and spiritual maturity and a lot more responsibilities…I was not able to process the emotions I’ve had. I tried bottling things up because I was afraid of taking a pause. I was afraid taking a pause because I believed I had no time for pausing. If I pause, the world will still continue to function and I will be late for the things I must accomplish each day for the time is precious. I believe that I still have much on my plate and I cannot anymore manage to entertain the issues of my soul—and that I believe is the most dangerous thing I did to myself.
Because I was so consumed with the demands of life, I totally forgot I am a human being. For the sake of completing my checklists, doing my part in a task, and survival…I have forgotten the goodness and the wonderful things that God has done in my life.
I might not be able to write here all the struggles I have been throughout the months when I avoided addressing the needs of my soul instead, I will tell you the highlights and the important points.
Continue…everything seemed to be foggy, I was not able to function in a healthy way, I slept and slept though I was not physically tired, I avoided school works for I felt tired, I was sluggish—my brain just do not function like it usually does.
So, how would this relate to judging my neighbour?
I struggled alone. I have always had a hard time telling people my problems and imperfections because I am afraid to be judged and to be pitied on. But just right now while writing this, I have realized that…
People like me exist (who are afraid to tell and show their imperfections to others) because of people like me also (who judges her neighbour when they do not meet my expectations).
There came a time when I cannot anymore contain what I felt and so I tried seeking help.
It is also written,
11 Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. 12 There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you to judge your neighbor?
Someone who mentors me said “The more that your mind tells you not to ask for help and talk about the things your struggle with, the more that you have to say it.”
And so I did
But it also makes sense now to me. I had to go through those struggles for me to learn one thing: TO EMPHATIZE. More than I needed a spiritual help, I needed to learn something for my soul and that is to feel for others and for myself.
- I struggled alone because I was afraid to tell and ask for help
- I was afraid to ask for help because I feared that people will judge me for not being perfect and for going through something hard.
SO, BOTTOMLINE… THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO DO NOT TALK ABOUT THEIR STRUGGLES AND ARE AFRAID TO ASK FOR HELP. THESE PEOPLE EXIST BECAUSE OF PEOPLE WHO JUDGE. AND JUDGEMENTAL PEOPLE CREATE AN UNSAFE ENVIRONMENT. IT IS EITHER THAT:
- PEOPLE ARE REALLY UNSAFE TO SHARE YOUR STRUGGLE WITH
- IT IS YOU, WHO EASILY JUDGES OTHERS SO YOU HAVE ALWAYS THOUGHT THAT OTHERS WILL ALSO JUDGE YOU
Thinkers are doers, indeed.
How beautiful it is to empathize with people. The same grace that we give to ourselves is the same grace that we extend to others. The reason why I get disappointed when people, things, and situations turn out not the way I expected them to is because I always wanted things to be in control—which I am not because God is the only who is in control; for today, tomorrow, and always. I have lived my whole life in performance and perfections but now, I appreciate the authenticity and genuinely me—who embraces her imperfections and talks freely about her struggles because she has already accepted the fact that she is a human being and not a human doing and God’s grace is abounding in my weaknesses. The parts of me that are weak and imperfect, God takes over… so I conquer. I have learned how to teach people patiently, I have also learned how to just listen. Sometimes, people just needs someone who can listen to them without judgement—because once, I needed that.
And everything is by his grace.
7 “Judge not, that you be not judged. 2 For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. 3 Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?
I was blind, but now I see. Truly, the word of God is first FOR OURSELVES—and second is for others.
I have always lived my life base on performance, But I thank God for transforming me and making me see how beautiful life is although it is not perfect.
Questions to Reflect on:
1. Do you have a habit of gossiping, slandering or judging others?
2. If YES, why do you think so?
3. How do you feel when judging your neighbour?
4. Will you extend grace today to yourself and allow God to work in your imperfections and as well as to your neighbor?
5. When a neighbour stumbles, would you rather point a finger or offer a helping hand?
May we always have the eyes of Jesus when we see others. Let us not forget to speak the truth in love and in mercy.