February 28th, 2013: The Fourteenth Day of Lent
February 28, 2013 § Leave a comment
“How can you think of saying to your friend, ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the
in your own eye?”
In this teaching, Christ touches on a principle that we would do well to remember: Our own faults can and do compromise our ability to minister and challenge others. If we push our mental picture from yesterday a bit further, we can imagine someone with a log sticking out of his operating a vision clinic, even performing optic surgery,while being totally unaware of the fact that his impairment prevents him from doing a good job. Such folly!
Yet, we do this all the time. When we remain unaware or willfully ignorant of our own faults, we limit our ability to speak into the lives of others. This is a tough thing to admit to ourselves – we find it so much easier to identify the faults in others and come up with ways that they may be changed for the better. Owning up to our own problems, and committing to allow the Holy Spirit to lead, heal, and change us – well, that’s much more difficult.
But Christ tells us that ignoring our own glaring sins to focus on the petty problems of others is ludicrous. He’s being honest; if we could only be honest with ourselves as well.
Again, as followers of Christ, we are called to challenge evil and injustice wherever they may be found. The wonderful part of this is that God uses deeply flawed and incomplete people to accomplish his will and to do good. We don’t have to be “100%” to make a difference in the world and in the lives of others. However, we must be aware of our own spiritual brokenness before we can think to make an effort to address brokenness in others.
We seem to be lingering in this section, just as we did with the previous section on worry. It’s a good thing; this is something we need to spend time on. It is especially appropriate for this season of Lent for us to spend time addressing our own shortcomings. Let’s continue to ask God for his forgiveness and help.
Lord Christ, I confess that I have done the ridiculous – I have chastised others for their petty faults while conveniently ignoring my own glaring sins. Please point out to me the places where I have fallen short of your glory, and show me your ways instead of my own. Amen.