“All those who lap the water with their tongues, as a dog laps, you shall put to one side…” Judges 7:1-18 First thought – “So undignified!” Even today I don’t know of anyone who would put their tongue to water like a dog. Does it not make more sense to scoop the water in your hand to drink? However, had I scooped the water on that day at the spring of Harod, I would not have been among those chosen by God to participate in delivering Israel. By my own eyes , I can not see what God sees. In my own mind I can not understand who or what God chooses to use. Fortunately, it’s not about me or anyone of us. The number of those that lapped like dogs were three hundred. From all who had been called out, 300 was the number God had decided he wanted for this battle. It wasn’t personal and it had nothing to do with how the men drank the water. We tend to make things personal and judge based on what we see and what we understand about our selves and others. However, in fulfilling God’s purpose, it is God’s presence within us – over and above our personal judgments, working through all who are called and simply willing to drink according to God’s will and not our own.
Is not this the carpenter..? Mark 6:1-13 There is so much more of God than any one person could ever know. If we are created in God’s image, then we can never truly know one another. In faith we are challenged to look beyond what we see. If in faith we believe in what is yet unseen, who might this “carpenter” be for us? Created in God’s image, who might we be for one another?
…it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by any human court. I do not even judge myself… It is the Lord who judges me. 1 Corinthians 4:1-7 We are often quick to cast our opinions concerning our selves and one another. In doing so we often short change ourselves. As we do all that God calls us to do, let God be the judge and continue to be all that God calls us to be.
Come and See. John 1:43-51 Spoken by Philip in response to Nathanael’s skepticism concerning Jesus’ residential status. Nazareth, a small remote town in Galilee barely registers with any significance. If not for the archeological evidence of its existence in the first century, some would still be skeptical. We put a lot of emphasis on where people come from (among other things). We assume positive things if a person is from a “wealthy” zip code and assume the worst from “impoverished” zip codes. We forget that what we see on the outside has nothing to do with what God has placed on the inside. Christ himself is evidence. By judging others, perhaps we judge what God may have allowed in order that one may experience His glory. Don’t let location fool you! Get to know God for yourself. Come and See.
Why do you see the speck in your neighbor’s eye, but do not notice the log in your own eye? Matthew 7:1-12 It seems to me that perhaps by the usage of the words speck and log, the one who judges carries the greater burden. Who can see with a log in their eye? At best our judgment of others is flawed because of our inability to “see.” I believe Jesus challenges us to thoroughly examine ourselves first. If we look close and thoroughly enough, we may find that we don’t have time for removing the specks from others because removing the login us is a lifelong commitment. Today, rather than judge, let us encourage one another in Christ to do what is right, and see if the specks and logs don’t fall from all of our eyes, by the power of the Holy Spirit and not our own.