Judgment has the ability to cause you pain or pleasure, depending on how it’s used. Let’s find out what Jesus prescribes:
In Matthew 7:1-5, Jesus warns us not to judge the motives of people’s actions. Judgment causes pain every time we decide we know WHY people do what they do: “He did that because he thinks I’m stupid” or “She said that because I’m not important.” When we judge other people’s motives, we tend to make that determination based on something about ourselves. This is why judgment is so incredibly painful.
Not only is it painful when it occurs, but we activate a cycle of continual pain. Rarely, if ever, does the pain stop at the moment of impact. Judgment is never-ending, and so is its deleterious effects. Once we’re caught in a cycle of judgment, the pain is ongoing, but because it’s become second-nature to us, we have no idea why we hurt so bad. In fact, part of the deception lies in the fact that we blame the other person for how we feel. We don’t realize that it was our judgment that caused the pain and not the action of the other person.
Just a few verses later, in Matthew 7:15-20, Jesus instructs us to judge the fruit of people’s actions. He explains how to recognize a tree by its fruit, for only a good tree will bear good fruit. We don’t have to determine WHY people do what they do. All we need to do is observe the outcome of WHAT they do–if it’s harmonious with what God calls good. By obeying this one prescription about judgment, we protect ourselves from a tremendous amount of self-inflicted pain while enabling ourselves to enjoy the pleasure of the fruit of the Good Seed we have sown.
If you’d like to learn How to Stop the Pain in your own life, CLICK HERE to join us for our next Life Transformation Workshop called “How to Stop the Pain”.