As I write this, it’s a rainy, Easter, afternoon. I have had a few things rolling around in my head this weekend that I wanted to talk about. When I was in the iPEC coaching certification program, we had foundation principles. One that really stuck out to me was, “True awareness is related to our lack of judgement.” As I went through class and beyond, I really thought about that and became aware of the times I would judge myself and others. I’ve tried to stop the judgement, but sometimes, I’ve found it’s so ingrained, I don’t even see it coming.
I grew up in the 70’s and 80’s, the era of big hair and rail thin models. The hair I got over but the rail thin stuck with me and I’m only recently (and with help) coming out of the self-comparison and striving that came from that “ideal” of the female body. My self judgement has often been around the “not thin enough” theme. And it is not difficult to find encouragement for that. There’s a constant barrage of media that would still say you’re not thin enough, or not muscular enough, maybe you don’t eat right, or not enough carbs, or protein, or fat, or… the list could go on and on. I have really started to grab hold of the movement to get away from all that. To encourage women to love themselves as they are. How God made us.
But Saturday, I was working out in the hotel gym where I was staying. I saw this woman diligently working out, first the elliptical and then weights. The straight up truth is that I looked at her and thought, “you’re working out so hard, what are you eating that has you overweight?” You see, she was a little heavy set. In that moment, I stopped. All of a sudden it hit me, I was projecting my own vision – the vision I’m trying to change – of what fit and “thin” looks like, on to her! I was struck by how incredibly wrong that was, and I haven’t been able to get it out of my head.
So what, if anything, does this have to do with it being Easter? In a way (and this is by no means a theological discourse, it’s my thoughts…) Jesus’ death was about judgement. He was judged by the very people that he had come to save. He didn’t judge anyone. In fact, He encouraged us to NOT judge others. That’s not our job. But He was judged. He was ridiculed. And why? Partially because those who opposed Him didn’t understand Him, the things they saw as important, He questioned. And it made them have fear. So they looked for ways to judge Him, which ultimately lead to His death. His death and resurrection lead to the promise of redemption for the world, as it was promised, but they had no right to judge and neither do we.
Judgement often comes from a place of insecurity. Often, we reflect in judgement those things that, in reality, we don’t like about ourselves. We see things in others that we may be blind to in us. “…why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own?” Matt. 7:3. Today, on Easter, my challenge to you is to start paying attention to the times when you judge. Notice, and then think about what quality, or belief system, you hold that led you to judge and take a look at that. Although I got tripped up the other day, I’m working on being aware of when judgement creeps in. It’s a journey, as I develop awareness of myself, the judgement lessens. I guarantee you, it creates feelings of compassion towards others – give it a try – then tell me about it, I’d love to share in your story.