Daily Readings: Genesis 19-20, Psalm 8, Matthew 7
“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
“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 7:1-5
I don’t know about you, but I find it extremely easy to see the speck of sawdust in the eyes of others! As a Christian in the marketplace, regardless of profession, it is extremely easy to recognize the shortcomings of others. “If they would only choose to _________, their life, career, relationships, etc. would be so much better!”
This is particularly easy when in a leadership role of any kind. It is so easy to throw your hands up in the air at points and say, “If the people I lead, students I teach, patients I care for, etc. would just do what I tell them to do, everything would be ok! Why can’t they just do it?!”
Jesus tells us to pay more attention to that massive plank in our own eye instead.
I know in my own leadership journey I have found that to be true over and over again. When my heart is in a posture of submission to God’s will in my life and I am constantly looking for areas of my life where my walk might be out of line with his will, life is so much easier! And, miraculously enough, it seems like folks I have the privilege of leading seem to grow the most during these times as well!
People will always follow your example more than your advice.
In addition, when I choose to ask myself, “How could I be a better leader, coach, friend to this person? Where am I falling short?” instead of, “What is wrong with them? How can they keep falling into the same habit pattern over and over again?” I am in a much better mindset to truly help them grow.
It starts by being willing to look in the mirror, observe the plank in our own eye, and focusing on aligning our heart with God before seeking to help, correct, or rebuke another.
There will never be a shortage of specks of sawdust in the eyes of others that we could easily point out. Jesus would prefer we remember that each and every day we probably have a new plank in our eye as well.
Thought to ponder
When have I recently been too focused on the speck of sawdust in the eye of another and not focused enough on the plank in my own eye?