The Pharisees and the teachers of the law were looking for a reason to accuse Jesus…(Luke 6:7).
Yesterday I was listening to someone, but if I could be quite honest, I was listening with ears of accusation. Since this person has hurt me before in the past my first initial response was to analyze nearly everything they said. I was looking for some way I could accuse or judge them in my own heart for their duplicity.
This reality only reveals a deeper need for transformation. If we constantly find ourselves listening to something or someone only to catch them in a trap and confirm within our own hearts and minds their hypocrisy we have only proved that we are actually the ones in need of deeper transformation. We cannot serve as judge over someone, but we certainly think we can by the way we live our lives. Sure, they need a transformed heart too, but we cannot neglect that the biggest heart in need of transformation is often our own.
Instead of listening with ears of accusation, silence your heart and mind. If you can’t listen without feeling a strong sense of the need to accuse get in your prayer closest and confess your sin to the Lord Jesus. Yes, that’s right, your sin. Each time we place that person on the chopping block, wishing to see them fall, we reveal within our own hearts a need for God’s love to invade our sinful, self-righteous hearts.
Sometimes I think I do this because I want to prove to myself how prideful they are, only confirming in my heart that what they did actually happened. In a strange way, it gives me some sense of satisfaction to catch them in their duplicity. This is why it’s so important that we surrender each hurt and painful circumstance to the Lord Jesus because if we don’t a root of bitterness will spring up. I don’t feel bitter about it, but I certainly sense a spirit of self-righteous judgment in my heart against that person.
Is it possible to be free from such a self-righteous heart like the one I experience? It is, but we must be willing to speak blessing over that person’s life instead. We must be willing to submit each situation to the Lordship of Christ, letting Him serve as judge over it and not demanding justice in a way that will only make us happy. Pray for God to work and be OK with how He chooses to work in your situation. Seek reconciliation and forgiveness wherever possible. Let go of your need to accuse and be set free instead by the love of God that dwells in you through faith.
Lord, thank you that you love me and those who have hurt me. Bless their lives. Forgive me for my self-righteous attitude. Lord, I want to be more like you. I receive all of your joy. I need it. Bring great joy from every pain I have ever experienced in this life. I trust you, in Jesus name, Amen.