Only God can judge a person’s heart
I had a coworker once who asked me about a decision that we had made regarding a difficult situation.
They asked, “Did we do the right thing?”
I paused for a moment and said, “We did what needed to be done.” This, of course, was not the “yes-no” answer needed to reassure my coworker. Sometimes the best option is not available, the right option that would fix something, cure something or make something better is simply not a resource we have. In light of that, we do what we can to make the right choice, the best choice, with what we have to work with.
Most often we do the best we can with the information we have and with the resources available to us. Your perfect vacation, the one you want, may be a $5,000 cruise. You don’t have the money for it. The right or perfect option is not available to you. You also don’t have enough time to take off from work. You make the vacation something you can take time for and afford.
Christ never struggled with this. He knew the right decision to make and had it in his authority and ability to make it and stand by it. Never wavering and seemingly never doubting. However, Christ was judged harshly by his critics and the religious leaders of the day, His own people and even sometimes His own followers. Nobody knows the heart of the person next to them and even Jesus was judged. Nobody fully understood why He was here, why He told a parable a certain way, why He healed who he healed. Its easy to judge somebody when they don’t look like or act like you.
As you look at the world around you, I encourage you to be reminded that none of us stands in the other person’s shoes. We can’t judge them for their actions or choices because we don’t have all the information. We do not know the position they are in, their background, their experiences. We do not know what ramifications they may face for the choices they make. We do not know what is in their hearts, what their motivation is, what they are thinking.
Proverbs 21:2-3 reads as follows: A person may think their own ways are right, but the Lord weighs the heart. To do what is right and just is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.
Remember, you may think you’re right in your ways, but so does that other person. However, only God knows the heart and only God can judge. My hope is that we all learn to pray to God in a manner that asks what is right, accepts what He leads us to be right, and then have the courage to follow through, regardless of fear of consequence and without the intention of glorifying ourselves because of our “right ways.”
God is the judge of all and God knows our hearts.
REV. BARRY VASSAR is pastor at Fitzgerald Memorial Baptist. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org