Without thinking about it as a negative thought…
For example, one of the things I like to judge is the traffic flow around me, determining the better lane to be in so I do not get stuck in a bad lane. Every time I judge correctly, then I am happy. Every time I judge incorrectly, I learn a better way of analyzing the situation.
Judging is necessary. And normal. Without it we often remain ignorant and follow the masses around blindly. Judging brings me about to a way of approaching life with a discriminant eye.
On my recent trip, I judge the entire experience based upon several things.
- Negative – No good coffee, cramped Budget Rental Truck cab, Too much fast food, Not enough time to truly enjoy the experience, Missed the bad weather here at home
- Positive – Good time with my son, Good cold weather experience, We did a good deed, It’s a trip!
Overall, I come down on the positive side of the trip because I felt needed and was able to help when it was needed!
Over the miles and through the years I have made choices based on my personality, likes, and dislikes. My personal and spiritual belief system speaks volumes about the choices I make. Where I go. What I get involved in. When there is something I cannot adhere to, then I refuse to spend time or money in that situation or at that place.
Here in my local environment, there are shops that probably have something of value to offer. However, because of their connection to a certain “school of enlightenment”, then I refuse to knowingly spend my time or money at their places of business. I will even drive distance to another provider. I do not want to support them. I know some who feel this way about a store like Walmart.
Along the same lines, I refuse to go to the local casino, or any casino here in Washington. Not only are they primarily gaming places and produce nothing of true value, they also have a different law governing them that allows cigarette smoking. That messes with my sinuses big time!If we do not make smart choices about what we get involved in, then we are constantly funding people we do not agree with!
In our modern world we judge politicians based on their party affiliation, their support of causes, and we align ourselves with the lesser of several evils. And we must vote, because not voting means we vote for whoever has the majority of supporters, even if we disagree with them.
I even base my choices on cars I buy on what they can deliver, and whether they are local or foreign. In my life I have only spent money on two foreign cars because they had the best four wheel drive options at the time – and they were both Subaru’s. Otherwise, I buy only American. Of course, my Dodge pickup was owned by Mercedes when I bought it, and now it’s produced by Fiat. It’s hard to stay “buying American” when the lines become blurred.
I love the story of Jehoshaphat when he helped Israel return to God.Jehoshaphat lived at Jerusalem. And he went out again among the people, from Beersheba to the hill country of Ephraim, and brought them back to the LORD, the God of their fathers. He appointed judges in the land in all the fortified cities of Judah, city by city, and said to the judges, “Consider what you do, for you judge not for man but for the LORD. He is with you in giving judgment. Now then, let the fear of the LORD be upon you. Be careful what you do, for there is no injustice with the LORD our God, or partiality or taking bribes.” (2 Chronicles 19:4-7 ESV)
Notice… “Consider what you do, for you judge not for man but for the Lord.” Our judging actions and nature are not for ourselves, but for God… Think about it. It has nothing to do about your personal choices, it has everything to do with the choices that represent God.
Jesus expands on this with a simple statement, “Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment.” (John 7:24 ESV) Right (righteous) Judgment. What’s right? It must be a “God” thing, and not a “me” thing.
Think about your personal choices. Have they all been about your likes and dislikes, or has it been about a God choice… Curious.