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And if any man hears my words, and believes not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.
(John 12:47)
I was sitting at an intersection waiting to make a left turn. There was a car coming to my left so I waited patiently for it to pass before I drove out across the lane and turned. I figured the car would go by before I made the turn, but it actually turned right onto the street I was on. The driver didn't use her turn signal.

That made my waiting there a waste of time. If the driver of that car would have used her turn signal, I could have gone much earlier.

I was tempted to be mad until I heard a small voice say, "Have you ever turned without using your turn signal?" I wanted to say, "I would never do that! That is poor driving!" But I couldn't say that because I knew that somewhere, on more than one occasion, I had violated that courtesy.

Most everything we get mad at someone else for we have violated ourselves. I realize there are a few extreme or violent things we might not have done. Congratulations! Send me your address and I'll mail you the "Congratulations because you haven't sinned in this area yet" certificate.

God, in His mercy, reminds me to be merciful—not judgmental, quick to anger, or critical. For the person who is not honest with himself will continue to be blind to his own personal shortcomings and failures. That person will never have a deep love for people.

It's hard to be perfect in such an imperfect world without a revelation of God's mercy—His mercy toward us and His mercy working in us toward others. Perfect people get angry with flawed people.

People who frequently judge everything and every word spoken by others are simply living in the practice of distraction from the clean-up efforts of their own personal lives. It helps them feel better about themselves. They constantly criticize or judge. Jesus was focused on saving the world, not judging and tearing people down.

Judge Only Yourself
Jesus created a better plan for us. He gave us His Word, which gives us the ability to judge ourselves. First Corinthians 11:31 says, "For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged." We judge ourselves against the Word of God.

Look at what it says in the book of Hebrews:
For the word of God is living, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
(Heb. 4:12)
If we are honest, it will show us where we have sinned and where we have received God's grace and mercy. People who are honest with themselves know they lap up the mercy of God like a thirsty dog on a blistering hot day drinking from a garden hose.

We survive only by the mercy of God. In turn, we should emulate God's mercy in our dealings with others, remembering that we have probably done the very thing we're mad at them about!

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All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

Tim Burt
Web site: Todays Fresh Manna
Pastor Tim became a part of the leadership team at Living Word Christian Center in 1984 and served as Associate Pastor from 1989 to 2017. He and His wife Renee, also a Pastor at Living Word, resigned, feeling impressed by God to pursue the tremendous growth of their ministry "Fresh Manna," as well as teaching conferences and seminars, and increasing their involvement on the mission field through Tim & Renee Burt Ministries.

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