Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light for my path. (Psalm 119)
When my concern is first and foremost for my own health and comfort, or with my possessions or social footprint, or even with my relationships with others, then my affections become disordered and chaotic and I become judgemental. Without God being my first love, I may expect others to take the position of God in my life, telling me what to do, and being my saving grace – judging them with harsh labels like ‘self-centred’ or ‘fool’ when they don’t measure up. Alternatively, I might expect others to view me as a god-like figure, and become controlled by my perception of who they are. Then it is easy for me to judge them harshly as ‘sinner’ or ‘unloving’ when they exercise their own freedom of choice as beloved children of God our Father. Either way, it is when my affections are disordered that I stop to judge others and become bound up in conflict when I weigh them against my limited idea of who they are, and find them wanting. In his ministry, Jesus repeatedly taught that we – that I - must not judge others, and that when I do pass judgement on another man, woman or child, I open myself to being judged and found wanting by my Father. Will I learn from my Father to be Christ-like, and generous in love and gentleness with others, or will I sink into habits of criticism and judgement? Holy Spirit of God, help me move beyond disordered affections into right relationships with others.
Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of your name; deliver us and forgive our sins, for your name’s sake. (Psalm 79:9)
Incline my heart according to your will, O God;
Speed my steps along your path.
Responsory, Liturgy of the Hours, Wednesday, Week, Morning Prayer
Soli ad gloriam
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Beverly Illauq lives in Kemptville, Ontario, where she greets each morning by seeking the Gospel Mystery of the Day - the Word of the Lord for direct and practical application to the specific challenges & joys of the day.