Judgment: The Great Separator
I don’t know about you but it is easy for me to make subtle judgments in my heart about another person’s motives. Sometimes it is actually discernment working to give me wisdom and caution about another person, but discernment does not bring separation and division like judgment does.
The other day, my wife, Lori, made a comment in disagreement with something that I had said about myself and what I preferred. (The issue doesn’t really matter. Often the enemy separates us over petty issues.) Immediately I felt offended that she would presume to know me better than I did. I could feel my countenance lower and I wanted to move away from her physically and emotionally – which I did.
Fortunately, I spoke up a little while later and mentioned to her that it felt bad to have her talk like she knew me better than I knew myself. When she responded and explained herself I realized that she had been speaking from a different perspective than I thought and I had misinterpreted her. Talking together helped but I could still feel some residue of separation even though I didn’t want it. I still wasn’t back to the place of feeling fully connected with Lori like I had been prior to the comment she made.
Upon waking up the next morning, the Lord brought the previous day’s incident back to mind. I could still feel that there was something “between” Lori and I. As I pondered this with the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, I realized that I had made a judgment about Lori’s motives. I forgave her and I asked the Lord to forgive me. Immediately my eyes and my heart were opened again. I could feel compassion for Lori and even feel the pain of pushing her away and leaving her alone when I know that she treasures relationship and connection with me. All of the walls of separation came down and my heart was restored.
In Matthew 7:2 Jesus said, “For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.”
Judgments are spiritual realities. We cannot escape the consequences of judgments. My judgment linked me to the very thing that I was accusing Lori of. I presumed to know her motives and know her better than she knew herself. I felt like Lori was putting herself above me, when in reality, my judgment put me above her. It put a clear wall of division between us.
It is our choice. We choose the judgments and we choose the separation. We choose whether or not we will humble ourselves to get rid of the judgment and restore relationship.
by Barry Byrne