It is amazing the things we judge other’s on and how we judge ourselves. Dennis has a quote…not sure who it is, maybe the movie “Facing the Giants”, the quote basically says, “You judge others by their actions and yourself by your intentions.” Isn’t that the truth?
Recently heard something that kind of stirred me up. Some of the words were correct others contradicting but in the end the message was, “what you are doing isn’t ‘right’; it isn’t good enough.”
Today in our Bible study (the women’s Bible study I attend – we are currently studying “Discerning the Voice of God”) we were talking about judging people and being judged. One of the big subjects in this study has been in regard to listening to and following the voice of God. We have discussed the fact that God requires different things of different people. Today on the DVD, Ms. Priscilla talked about God knowing our heart and He knows when we pursue him out of a desire of the things He has for us versus pursuing Him just to know Him. In other words, God knows our motivation.
When I was growing up, a woman was judged to be “Holy” if her hair was a certain length and her skirt was long enough. One of the best preaching series I have ever had a chance to listen to (first hand) was by Pastor Randy Phillips (Yes, the Phillips in Phillips, Craig and Dean). He taught about what Holiness really is…the simple meaning is being set aside for the Father’s use. It is POSITIONAL not CONDITIONALS. In other words, holiness is a position we place ourselves in, it is not based on anything we do or do not do; when we commit our lives to Jesus, He says we are “Holy”. (The series is most likely available through Promiseland Church in Austin – www.promiselandchurch.net).
When I was young, my sister’s and I started meeting together on Thursday nights; a kind of “girls’ night”. We would meet up, watch “Friends” and then we would pray together. Once when I was sharing this with a friend, she made the comment that “Friends” was just so bad, how could we watch it. We thought it was pretty funny and we were just hanging out. That group grew to over 20 women at one point…and many of those women were not “church attenders”. It turned into very real ministry opportunity. Watching TV isn’t “Holy” but God still used Thursday nights to reach some women who would not have come to our church.
When I was studying prophecy at Christian International, one thing they burn into us is when communicating a Word from God, do not judge how person receives the word. Everyone is different. Everyone reacts differently. When God speaks to some people, they cry. Someone else may rejoice. I am the type of person who intently listens so I can record every word. Because of this, there have been times when someone thought I wasn’t “receiving” the word they were giving. Once when this happened a woman actually told me (in addition to the powerful prophetic word she ministered to me) that I needed to fall on my face and repent and humble myself. It was a total judgement on her part.
In churches today, we may not judge people by how long their hair is or if their leaves are long enough. Our judgements have changed but we are still judging. These days we judge people’s holiness by how financially successful they are..”They must be in God’s will, God is blessing them.” Or by how exuberant their worship is…”They must be Holy because they always raise their hands during worship”. It is ridiculous. If we are going to judge people, we may as well go back to the time when we could tell who was “Holy” by who was wearing coolates (wow, if you know what they are, then you have been there – if not, don’t worry about it, spell check doesn’t even have it) at the pool.
When you start to “get it” and it hits your heart, some things will be different in your life. When you understand how much God loves you and has the very best in mind for your life, your life will begin to reflect that belief. BE FREE!!!
To me, FREEDOM means, being FREE to be me. If you don’t like me…that’s okay, just pray for me. God has a pretty good handle me. He is really good about tweaking me. And I will stop worry about you and what is “wrong” with you. I will pray for you that you will be all God has created you to be. Let’s leave the judging to God. Be yourself; God made you and He approves of you and even likes who He created you to be. Be the best “you” you can be.