Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” – Matthew 7:3-5
There was once a manager of a minor league baseball team who was so disgusted with his center fielder’s performance that he ordered him to the dugout and assumed the position himself. The first ball that came into center field took a bad hop and hit the manager in the mouth. The next one was a high fly ball, which he lost in the glare of the sun—until it bounced off his forehead.
The third was a hard line drive that he charged with outstretched arms; unfortunately, it flew between his hands and smacked his eye. Furious, he ran back to the dugout, grabbed the center fielder by the uniform, and shouted, “You’ve got center field so messed up that even I can’t do a thing with it!”
It’s easy for some people to blame others when things aren’t going their way, isn’t it? They try and try to figure out just what someone else did wrong to put them in their predicament, all the while the real blame should be put on themselves.
In the Christian life, God wants you to take responsibility for your own actions. It’s easy to look at others and find faults with them. But remember that every time you point a finger, you have three more pointing right back at you. So examine yourself before you blame others. Be quick to confess when you might be in the wrong. A humble heart is the key to maintaining good, godly relationships with others.
Ask God to show you areas where you’ve been too judgmental toward others. If you need to, confess how you’ve unfairly blamed them, and accept responsibility when it’s yours.
Questions for thought
Why do you think it’s so important to God that you focus on your own actions rather than watching what others are doing?
How can examining your own life help you love others with humility and grace?