REFLECTION CAPSULE – June 21, 2021: Monday

“Purifying our lives, rather than indulging in mud-slinging on others!”

(Based on Gen 12:1-9 and Mt 7:1-5 – Monday of the 12th Week in Ordinary Time)

A story is told of an elderly man who, during his evening walk, was surprised to see, a man hoeing his garden (=digging and loosening the mud)…
… while sitting in a chair!

“What laziness!” thought the elderly man.

But suddenly he saw, leaning against the chair…
… a pair of crutches.

The man was at work despite his handicap!

That made the elderly person to think to himself: “How true is the saying: Judge a tree from its fruit, not from its leaves!”

So often it happens that we place people on a trial – as in a court – and judged according to our standards and our human yardsticks….
… Perhaps, most of them would be been condemned and convicted.

But seldom have we realised that there could always be “another side to the story that I am seeing!”

The Gospel of the Day is a teaching on this tendency of human beings to judge – hastily and impulsively – which very often turns out to be rash and reckless

Jesus says, “Do not judge!” (Mt 7:1)

We need to clarify what does the word JUDGE mean…

Jury makes judgments.

Schools make judgments on students.
Companies make judgments on candidates in an interview or in cases of promotion/demotion.

All these may not constitute the judgment that Jesus means.

Judging, in the sense of Jesus, is condemning!

It is to have a negative and pessimistic attitude to human beings and condemning and rejecting them outright and absolutely!!

We could consider “Judge not” from three aspects:

  1. We are unworthy to pass a final judgment on any person or situation

We need to let God be God and as human beings, we need to know our limitations.

  1. We are not to judge the motives of other people

Human beings see only the external…
… God sees the heart of the person!

  1. We are not to be petty faultfinders:

We need to cease having a “microscopic vision”, in order to scan and scrutinize the faults and weaknesses of others.

In the light of today’s Gospel, we need to examine certain aspects of our life…

Do I…
… maximize the sins and faults of others and minimize mine?
… come to quick, hasty and negative conclusions?
… pass critical stories to other?
… have a strong bias to find others guilty?
… be too harsh even when speaking the truth?
… dilute an unkind remark by saying, “I was only joking.”
… say something critical and then trying to cover it up?

Even after this examination, if there is a tendency to judge, then there is one person we can be critical of…
… our own selves!

Yes, let us be judging our actions, our behaviours, our thoughts…
…. and seek to purify our lives, rather than indulging in mud-slinging on others!

The Lord constantly reminds us: “Turn from your evil ways and keep my commandments and my statutes…
… in accordance with all the law which I commanded your fathers, and which I sent to you by my servants the prophets.” (2 Kings 17:13)

When we look into the lives of people…
… and feel to judge them

Let us consciously tell ourselves: There could always be “another side to the story that I am seeing!”

Yes… Judge a tree from its fruit, not from its leaves!

God Bless! Live Jesus!

Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism:

The deepening of faith in the virginal motherhood led the Church to confess Mary’s real and perpetual virginity…
… even in the act of giving birth to the Son of God made man.
In fact, Christ’s birth “did not diminish his mother’s virginal integrity but sanctified it.”
And so the liturgy of the Church celebrates Mary as Aeiparthenos, the “Ever-virgin”.
Against this doctrine the objection is sometimes raised that the Bible mentions brothers and sisters of Jesus. The Church has always understood these passages as not referring to other children of the Virgin Mary. In fact James and Joseph, “brothers of Jesus” are the sons of another Mary, a disciple of Christ, whom St. Matthew significantly calls “the other Mary”. They are close relations of Jesus, according to an Old Testament expression.
Jesus is Mary’s Only Son…
… but Her spiritual motherhood extends to all men whom indeed he came to save:

“The Son whom she brought forth is He whom God placed as the first-born among many brethren, that is, the faithful in whose generation and formation She co-operates with a mother’s love. (Cf. CCC # 499-501)

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