Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Not Condemnation

In our society, many of us feel a desperate need to shame others. We often find ourselves reverting to crude assessments of the faith of others, their morality, their flaws, their "wrong" opinions and beliefs. How quickly we can distract ourselves from the hard work of exploring the inner terrain of our own lives. Sadly, we often find it so much easier to criticize others than explore the ares within us that need attention--ultimately, a form of escape.
Recently, a good friend told me of a quote he had heard: "comparison is the theif of joy." I bristled with both inspiration and conviction as soon as I'd heard it. Perhaps one reason many of us find it so easy to condemn and so hard to have grace--the grace which Christ exhibits--is that we find ourselves stuck in the comparison game. "How can I be happy as long as he or she..." and we fill in the blanks indefinitely. Seeking joy in who God has created us to be--without comparison to others--can help us garner a greater freedom in who we are, thereby giving us grace for our own humanity, and for that of others.

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