Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom.
Because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful.
Mercy triumphs over judgment!
The dollar bills I keep in the console of my car are sweet reminders of my youngest grandson. While in my car one day he said, “My Dad has thousands of dollars in his car so that he can give to homeless people.” Wow! Out of the mouths of babes. I sense caution sometimes about when and why I should give a handout to a person regardless of their disheveled appearance. Obviously, personal safety is an important issue because our world is a dangerous place—just as it was when Jesus walked on this earth.
Whose job is it to judge whether a beggar is going to do buy alcohol, drugs or just a simple meal from McDonald’s? An embedded judgmental spirit or apathy to the reality of needs in our world today might be the easiest paths to choose. But should Christians take the easiest paths?
I often choose the book of James as a personal guide because I continually need counsel and correction to guide my conduct. The book contains prolific guidance about many emotional issues such as suffering, patience, waiting, service, anger, speech, faith, spiritual warfare, grace, mercy, pride and more.
Sometimes, though, the struggle is even more difficult with those closest to us. Our families, friends and fellow Christians can rock our boat so easily. Granted, it’s easy to hand a dollar bill to a needy person knowing we will never see them again. But what about when we see problems with those near to us? I encourage you, friend, to take steps toward freeing yourself from an exhausting judgmental spirit. Taking steps toward renewal—by walking in the light of grace and mercy— bring healing.
Jesus, thank you for your powerful Word and specifically the book of James today. Soften my heart. Give me direction and courage to serve others.