In the last few weeks, I have been doing a lot (and I do mean A LOT) of self-reflection. I don’t believe I’ve done this much self-reflection before in my entire life. I’ve been having to do it for class and honestly, I’m so glad that I’m experiencing this level of self-reflection. I’ve understood the need for examining self but like most people, we go just so far where we stay comfortable. We don’t like doing self-reflection to the point of being uncomfortable. However, I’m learning that’s what we need and we need to do it more than what we realize.
One lesson that came to the surface was about judgement. We know the Bible talks a lot about judgement. From God’s own divine position to our earthly position. There are degrees of judgement that are lawful and respected. In fact, if we didn’t have those forms of judgement, we would be living in a world of uncontrolled chaos (much worse than the chaos we have). However, it’s easy to fall into a state of making judgements about ourselves and others that are negative because it’s so natural to judge.
The negative judgement comes in when the motives aren’t positive. Also, when the ideal standard is not realistic. We’ll judge someone based on outward appearances versus getting to know them personally. We’ll make judgements when we feel our idea of perfection or righteousness isn’t being achieved by others. Unfortunately, we live in a society that has set a lot of man-made standards on appearance and more. The influence behind some of these man-made standards are not Godly or Christ-like. We’ll even end up negatively judging others because they didn’t do or follow what we thought was the right thing to do. Sure, God wants us to offer wise counsel to each other but just because they don’t follow what we said doesn’t give the right for them to be negatively judged. If anything, pray for that individual that God reaffirms and directs them according to what is right for their life!
In these past few weeks, I had to recognize there were negative influences (or demonic strongholds) that causes me to feel inadequate. I struggled with low self-esteem for years. I had to realize that at a very young age, I was influenced by the wrong standards. What I thought would help improve my self-esteem were only temporary. I had to dig deep and find the roots of why I had (and sometimes still do have moments) low self-esteem. I was different and still am. I will never meet man-made standards and the only standards I now want to meet is God’s. I had to learn to love my uniqueness. I had to learn to love and not judge others who were judging me. As much as we all have to learn to love self, we must also learn to love others. I can’t judge others who judge me. Two wrongs don’t make a right. Honestly, I’m having to practice this spiritual discipline of judgement every day. Towards myself and others. I’m broken but I’m whole because of God’s glory! Because of His grace! Because of His mercy! Because Jesus Christ, my Savior, redeems me!
Just like God’s done all of this for me, He’s done the same for everybody else. Nobody is perfect and we all need God’s grace and mercy. It’s time to stop the negative judgements and start living in true freedom of God’s truth!