Thursday, July 26, 2012
God's not applauding....
"Be especially careful when you are trying to be good so that you don't make a performance out of it. It might be good theater, but the God who made you won't be applauding." -- Matthew 6:1 (The Message Translation)
I love this verse, especially the Message translation of it! Jesus really gives it to us! He knows our human tendencies to be self-righteous and proud of our actions, and lets us know that is NOT what God is looking for from us.
Being good and doing good IS the right thing to do, obviously. But, it's when we make an effort to let others know of the good we do AND when we let others know when they are NOT being good...that is the problem.
When we look around us and see the bad behavior, poor choices and the consequences of others, it is easy for us to look at them and judge them. It is easy to stand back and tsk tsk them from afar, or worse yet to shame to their faces. This makes us feel better about ourselves. We all do this...and it happens all the time.
But Jesus is saying that this kind of behavior is not pleasing to God. God wants us to obey him and do as he directs, but he doesn't want us to point out when we are doing it and he most certainly does not want us to judge others when they are not behaving.
You know, I have a problem with this myself. I try very hard not to judge others. I want to act as Jesus did, and Jesus says NOT to judge others. But, I find myself judging other Christians for judging others! I am no better, am I?
I think the best thing we can do is take care of our own actions and not worry about what others are doing. When we do good and act the way God wants us to, others will see and take notice...we don't have to bring it to their attention. When we see others acting in a way that is not pleasing to God, we need to be reminded that God is very capable of dealing with them himself...he doesn't need us bringing it to his attention.
That good old golden rule is such good advice! Treat others the way you want to be treated. I don't want others to judge me, therefore, I won't judge others!
I am a very dramatic person and love attention, but God doesn't want my play-acting when comes to my obedience. I don't have to put on a good show for God or for the others around me. Just my obedience is enough.