Today's Gospel: Mark 7:14-23 "But what comes out of the man, that is what defiles him." Mark 7:20 I live in an affluent town ​where a ​lot of women put great emphasis on outward appearances: looking fit and slim, wearing the right clothes, ​driving the right car​, etc​​. One of these women is arrogant and mean. ​I​n subtle, passive-aggressive ways, she tries to make me feel inferior so she can feel superior. The good new is, I've ​b​ecome friends with ​other ​moms in my town who care more about being good people than they do about making things look good. I feel blessed and grateful to have met them. But having that mean mom experience has me grouping women into the "us" and "them" categories. There's a great danger in living ​with this "us" and "them" ​approach.​ ​In a crazy​,​ reverse-world way, ​I'm starting to assum​e that all those beautiful women are just as unkind and condescending as that mean mom, without taking the time to get to know them. I am no better than the Pharisees and Scribes in Mark's Gospel who judg​ed the disciples by what and how they ate.​ J​esus clarified that "what comes out of the man, that is what defiles him." Taking ​it a step further, what comes out of a person's heart also defines ​her. I wasn't taking the time to get to know ​these beautiful women to see what comes out of their hearts. Instead, I was making myself feel just as superior as that mean mom by putting myself above​​ them​, assuming my heart was better than theirs. Shame on me! Jesus didn't come to challenge ​just ​the Scribes and the Pharisees. He came to challenge you and me too. I need to start listening to what He says, and remove the plank from my own eye before I ​​judg​e the splinter in ​anyone else's. ​


Is there someone I've judged before getting to know her?


God, please let me leave judgement to You. Help me to focus more on examining my own heart, ​t​han ​on ​drawing conclusions about ​anyone else's.
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