What a mess
October 21, 2021, 9:43 AM

Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?  You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye. Matthew 7:1-5

Some words of wisdom for parents and grandparents: always be suspicious of silence. Believe it or not, kids can, in fact, be too quiet. Unfortunately, I learned this lesson the hard way when my kids were younger. With their mom out running errands and me watching TV on the couch, it suddenly registered I hadn't heard my kids make a peep in a few minutes, so I went room by room looking for them and find them in my youngest son’s room. I opened the door and halted in my tracks.

As far as the eye could see, books, puzzle pieces, cars, monster trucks, Legos, Barbies, stuff animals, and costumes galore laid scattered. Everything in me wanted to fly off the handle, go into Drill Sergeant mode and start barking out orders. But, if I reacted in anger, I would've lost sight of the relationship. Instead, I needed to step into their world (aka the messy room) and help them clean up their mess, even if it meant a little pain, like a Lego getting stabbed in my foot.  

How did my son’s room get destroyed? They played with a toy, had their fun, and then moved on to something else. It wasn't until they looked up and saw me standing in the doorway until they realized the mess they had created. The same principle holds for us as adults. No one develops destructive sin patterns overnight. People don't just fall away from God; it begins one small step at a time. Suddenly, that slow drift takes us to places we never intended to be, and when we finally look in the mirror, we identify ourselves according to their sin. 

If I left my kids to fend for themselves cleaning-wise, there is a good chance they'd sit there powerless. Their inactivity wouldn't be an act of defiance on their part but rather a show of being completely and utterly overwhelmed. For those you struggle to love, their destructive behaviors have become part of who they are in many ways. As a result, many of them have lost hope that change is even possible. 

While stuck in their sin, they look at the mess they have created relationally and reason they are a lost cause. When we see someone struggling with destructive behaviors, we often sit idly by. Leaving someone in destructive patterns in the name of keeping peace is not loving. You have to be willing to be bold enough to speak up. But, you have to consider your tone and your motives. 

You can't just lob condemnation grenades in your difficult person's direction and think that will solve the problem. God calls us to love to the extent we find ourselves loved by Him. Relationships take time. Transformation doesn't occur with a snap of a finger. Messes take a while to clean up. You must be willing to take the time to move into people's worlds. If you are not willing to invest in the relationship, you are not qualified to address the problem. 

Entering someone's world is the road less traveled. It can be rocky at times and seem impassible. Sometimes it gets worse before it gets better. The route begins with self-awareness and getting the log out of your own eye. It involves being willing to let others speak into your own life. Getting the plank out is not so you can be perfect, but rather to see clearly. You become less condemning by becoming more familiar with His grace. The more you know His grace, the more you know how desperately you need it as well as the difficult people in your life do. 

Prayer: Father God, remind me of my desperate need for grace. You cover my imperfections with Your love. Thank You for stepping in to my mess and saving me. Lord help me to not lose sight of my brokenness, but, at the same time, always remember I stand in Your forgiveness. Show me Lord how I may extend grace and forgiveness to those around me, so that my life will be a reflection of my relationship with You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


10-21-2021 at 9:50 AM
Carol B
A much needed reminder and message thank you.
Post a Comment