In recent days our country has gone wild judging whether Sarah Palin should have accepted the honor of running for Vice-President of the United States.
These are comments I have heard: She's a wife and mother, that should come first. She is not being submissive to her husband because she wants to be a leader. Her daughter is unmarried and pregnant, she must not be a good enough leader in her own family, how can she help lead a country. She has a Down's Syndrome child, she needs to be home with him. How can she balance motherhood and leadership? She's not fulfilling God's most high calling of being a mom. This list goes on and on.
My purpose in writing this post is not to make a political statement, though I am very impressed with Sarah Palin and the choice John McCain made in selecting her as a running mate. It is just evidence of how we judge what other's should or should not do. Who am I to judge what someone believes God is speaking to their heart?
I have been asking myself this very question frequently in recent months as I travel my own journey toward allowing God to fully develop His character in me. It has been my 'right' to judge others based upon my opinion of how things should be. Right? Wrong! I do not have a right to judge anyone.
"There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you - who are you to judge your neighbor?" James 4:12
I absolutely love the book of James. It is probably my favorite when it comes to learning how to live a Godly life. It has taught me so much about living a life of love, trust, endurance, relationship and faith.
What does judging have to do with Grace? For me, it is only when I realize God's amazing grace given to me that I can learn not to judge. God reached His loving, gracious hand down to this lowly, sinful, helpless child of His and while extending His hand He also extended His Grace.
"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God - not by works, so that no one can boast." Ephesians 2:8-9
I have taken great pride in being a perfectionist which has led me to a life of being judgmental. Ouch! That hurts. I thought perfectionism was a great trait. I have found it is only another word for judgmental. Ouch again. What is God doing? Cleansing the heart of his daughter.
It is God's grace that has saved me from the eternity I truly deserve. It is not by all the seemingly 'perfect' things I have done. It is a gift from a Father who loves his little girl. I cannot boast in my accomplishments because they mean nothing. But I can boast in a God who loves not only me but all of the children in this world.
Therefore, how can I judge what someone else chooses to do with their life? Whether it is Sarah Palin accepting her nomination, a child getting a tattoo, an employer choosing to fire someone, a friend going back to work when her baby is only 4 weeks old, a Christian wanted a naval piercing, a neighbor getting drunk everyday, a spouse using hurtful words, an unplanned pregnancy, someone choosing to leave their marriage for another, or a thousand other examples of things I may have an opinion about, I still have no right to judge.
Believe me, if asked, I will give my opinion, but it is the other person who will one day stand before their maker and answer for their choices, as will I. We all have made and will continue to make choices in our lives that others will think are wrong. We are all born of a sinful heritage attempting to make it in a sinfilled world. It is only by God's grace that we have been given an opportunity to have a joyous eternity in His presence. Everyday I make it my goal to listen to God's voice and make the best decisions based on what I believe He is speaking to me. I believe that ultimately my 'greatest high calling' is being an obedient, loving daughter of the Highest King.
Allowing God's grace to penetrate my heart is bringing freedom to love people in my life who are just as imperfect as I am. I leave you today with one final scripture.
"I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me - the task of testifying to the gospel of God's Grace". Acts 20:24
I pray in my writings, my words, my work and mostly my relationships that others can see God's grace extended not only to me but through me.
May it a grace-filled day!
I couldn't agree with you more. :) Great post! It cracks me up how quick every body (especially media...) is to find fault!ReplyDelete
I too think that Sarah Palin is quite an impressive woman! Frankly I think she should be president... :) She's a great role model.
Blessings to you! I think your blog design is beautiufl by the way. :)
Thank you for your encouraging words left on my blog about my mom's heart transplant. I plan to read about your husbands story.ReplyDelete
God is good!
Cindy this is an awesome post! By sharing your heart, God can use this to teach all of us. Thank you!ReplyDelete
... but for the Grace of God! Amen Sister! You words spoke to me as I was that perfectionist too!ReplyDelete
"What does judging have to do with Grace? For me, it is only when I realize God's amazing grace given to me that I can learn not to judge. God reached His loving, gracious hand down to this lowly, sinful, helpless child of His and while extending His hand He also extended His Grace."
This is an awesome statement! Thank you for sharing your heart, your faith!
I've just been in a plain lather today over all the media "buzz" about this entire political mess. I hate politics. HATE! It almost always brings my blood to a full boil; thus, I stay away from most television these days. Still and yet, I must learn to love those I've spent most of the day disliking!ReplyDelete
Love is the key. Agapao loving...a best interest kind of love. John continually speaks to love as being the primary penchant of our hearts toward humanity. I wish it were that easy, but for me, it's a constant struggle to find the balance between disagreeing with my neighbor while still loving them toward God's kingdom purpose.
Thanks for your thoughts in the matter. We would all do well to remember our salvation as the supreme grace that it is.
Wonderful post Cindy. Oh to love the sinner while hating the sin. We often find it difficult to separate the two. Some of my actions may not be as visible, but I have unkind thoughts and actions and I speak hurtful words; I can want my way or struggle with pride. God sees sin as sin, and doesn't categorize it or see some as worse than others.ReplyDelete
I find I also struggle with judging by appearances and by basing decisions on personal preferences over God's precepts. So thankful for God's grace.
Thank you for praying for our family today. I'm amazed with all of these wonderful bloggers out here who are lifting us up in prayer. That is the body of Christ-how we can pray for one another even though we don't personally know one another. I will be back to visit you when I can spend more time reading through your posts. I just wanted to thank you for praying.
Thank you for you sweet comment on my blog today--SarahReplyDelete
What a beautiful post, Cindy! You write so beautifully, and your heart truly comes across through your words. And I agree with you about not juding others, and about God's amazing grace.ReplyDelete
Thanks for your comment today...it choked me up.
I am so glad to meet you! Thanks for stopping in at my blog this week, I have enjoyed reading through yours today! I loved what you said in this post. You're right, we are often too quick to judge others when we need to be worried about the plank in our own eye!! I am looking forward to coming back to visit you often.
Hey, Cindy, first timer here. I like to visit blogs of people near my own age. I am a perfectionist who has fallen off the perfectionist wagon, so to speak. But I'm learning to live with less than perfect in many areas of life. And yes, I think we perfectionists are judgmental. The older I get, the less judgmental I am, though, through life experience and the Lord.ReplyDelete
Indeed, but for the Grace...ReplyDelete
Wonderfully expressed, Cindy.
So you are overcoming perfectionism too? For me being a perfectionist makes it hard for me to trust as I want the future all laid out on a nice little map where all the ducks are in a row.ReplyDelete
Lately our ducks have not been in a row and we are going through some stressful stuff. I don't know what the future holds. And I am okay with that today, thankfully.