“Do not judge, so that you may not be judged. For with the judgment you make you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get. Why do you see the speck in your neighbor’s eye, but do not notice the log in your own eye? Or how can you say to your neighbor, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ while the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your neighbor’s eye." Mt. 7:1-5
When we have done something wrong, we hope that we will be forgiven. We ask the Lord to forgive us and promise him, in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, that we will not commit the offense again. The priest gives us Absolution, and therewith, the Lord gives us forgiveness. We promise not to offend again, but we know it can happen again, although it shouldn't. Most of us strive, do the best we can, not to err again, right?
It is up to us, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, whether perceived or not, to take the action to go to confession. We do not expect another person (apart from the Confessor) to berate us for what we may have done. It is not up to that other person to judge us. Only God can do that. If done in a sensible and kind way, it is alright to extend fraternal correction, for instance on the part of a teacher or spiritual adviser, but others really should not seek to get involved.
It is the respect we have for our brothers and sisters in the name of the Lord, which procludes us from assigning blame. Many people do, and that often leads to unnecessary arguments. For example, some people believe it is their right, their job, to accuse someone who has been reported (for instance in a newspaper) to have committed a crime. Yes, this Nation allows us free speech so we can say what we want to say, but unless we are directly involved in the action, I don't think it's really any of our business to get involved. It is not a mature thing to do. It is unwise to accuse anyone of anything unless we are personally involved. There is however, another reason I wish to touch upon: Peace of Mind. It is not possible to reach a state of peace of mind, if your mind is constantly filled with thoughts of wrongdoing on the part of others. Peace of Mind is a prerequisite for us, to begin to live a life of the soul, a life totally centered around Jesus Our Lord, and, to love our sisters and brothers isn't really possible until we recognize the reciprocal love of Jesus in us, and we give that back to Him. So it is beneficial to keep your mind clear of extraneous gossip, and unimportant data that does not concern us directly.
Be always kind to one another. Judge Not!
Praise the Lord, now and Forever!!
Peace and Good!
Fred Schaeffer, OFS
February 9, 2013