26th Feb - Don't, don't and do


Luke 6:36-38 (Holy Communion)

"Don’t, don’t and do" is how we can remember these words of Jesus.

Firstly, don’t judge. We human beings can sometimes be so sure of what is going on in another person. This kind of god-like confidence can be scary. Actually, only God truly knows a person's motives and inner thought processes. St Paul said it so himself in 1 Cor 4:5: "Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart."

I once attended a talk on schizophrenia. It can be described as a general condition where our perception of facts do not match with reality. This is hard to swallow, but when human beings take it upon themselves to play god and imagine they can see into another person's soul, that may be just be nothing more than a schizophrenic expression. Or it may be just a mirroring of one's inner self. To refrain from judging is to free ourselves from a burden which we are not made to carry.

Even if you think you have the facts of a person's wrongdoing, Jesus asked us not to condemn another. There are proper authorities in the family, workplace or society for discipline to be imposed and punishment to be meted. Unless we have that responsibility, Jesus asked us to refrain from throwing the stones.

And finally, we are asked to forgive. I don’t think that a human can easily forget when a deep wrong has been done to him or her. But forgiveness is a choice, even if it takes time. Perhaps this is why we were told to forgive “seventy times seven” (Matt 18:22). Forgiveness has no limits.

These three "don't, don't and do" commands are reciprocal and have a boomerang effect. The consequences of these actions return to bless you.

At this Lent season, practise this triad and you will be surprised what a big change it will make to your attitude, life and friendships.

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