Sooner or later we’ll all have to face God, regardless of our conditions. -2 Corinthians 5:10
How often do you read scripture or hear preaching that makes you think of someone besides yourself? It’s normal to feel a sense of vengeance when you consider that the actions of others, actions you’ve deemed sinful, will be judged by God.
It’s hard not to want the people who have hurt you to pay. You want people to know how they’ve made you doubt, how they’ve made you insecure, how they’ve made you feel like you didn’t exist. You want them to feel bad. Really bad, like the way stern disapproval from God would feel.
Fantasizing about a day of judgment when they can finally see everything the way it is and not the way they think it is.
The problem with this mental trap is when you fail to see how you’ve dumped your own poison to the pot. Sitting in opposition to another is never a clear cut division. If you have sides in an argument, sides as a result of sin fallout, then you know you’re doing something wrong. It’s hard to see how your hard heart toward another is wrong when you feel like you’re right.
‘Tolerating a wrong attitude toward another person causes you to follow the spirit of the devil, no matter how saintly you are. One carnal judgment of another person only serves the purposes of hell in you.” -Oswald Chambers
Stop focusing on what others are doing wrong. When it all comes out, it will be bad enough, don’t make it worse. Your grudges and lists make you look bad, not them. Don’t buy in to the religious fantasy that you understand God and all the dark threads He weaves into your life. You have no idea what He’s doing.
If you’ve ever been misunderstood or misjudged, then you can be assured you have misunderstood and misjudged others. Focus on your own need for Jesus and leave the speck in your friends’ eye to the One who can see it clearly. God doesn’t use a soft light when He’s setting things right. No one can pass muster.
Woe to all of you who want God’s Judgment Day! Why would you want to see God, want him to come? When God comes, it will be bad news before it’s good news, the worst of times, not the best of times… At God’s coming we face hard reality, not fantasy—a black cloud with no silver lining. -Amos 5:18-20
If Jesus is real, then live like it. You represent Him, not your standard for Christian living. Don’t make a list of Christian behaviors to check off during the day.
(Read Bible? Check. Pray? Check. Smile a lot? Check. Witness to sinners? Check. Ask for forgiveness for speeding? Check. Ask for forgiveness for honking at the idiot in front of me? Check. Congratulate myself for not becoming prideful of my ability to submit my sins to Jesus as they happen? check. Speak ‘truth in love’ to the smokers out in the parking lot? Check. Speak ‘truth in love’ to the fellow Christian who didn’t pray over her lunch? Check. Look for opportunities to speak more ‘truth in love’, find more sinners and ask for more forgiveness? Check.)
If you really have a grasp on what Jesus did and what it means, you wouldn’t be so obsessed and uptight about the morality of self and others. If you really ‘walked in the light’ of truth, you would be embracing others, thorns and all. You respond to others the way Jesus responds to you. If you’re not getting scratched and dirty, then you’ve got the wrong Jesus on your dashboard.
‘For many of us, walking in the light means walking according to the standard we have set up for another person.’ –Oswald Chambers
But if we walk in the light, God himself being the light, we also experience a shared life with one another as the sacrificed blood of Jesus, God’s Son, purges all our sin. -1 John 1:6“As you have the light, believe in the light. Then the light will be within you, and shining through your lives. You’ll be children of light.” -John 12:36