Luke 6:37 ESV
Two Wrongs Don’t Make A Right
When I was young I heard the words, “two wrongs don’t make a right.”
It was a long time ago but as I recall the first few times I heard that I wasn’t sure exactly what it meant.
Soooo…my parents followed it up by telling me just because everyone else is doing it that doesn’t make it right.
I still argued that it wasn’t fair that I didn’t get to do it as well.
Now, my dad (da) had really narrow reading glasses that he usually wore halfway down his nose. He would look me straight in the eye over his reading glasses and tell me, “you’re not just anybody.”
At that point I wasn’t sure how to reply so I usually walked off. I knew better than to stomp off because that would have brought about an instant reaction (not a good reaction).
In my head I was stomping off using really big steps. Of course big steps for me were baby steps for other people since fully grown I never made it to 5 feet and my foot never made it to a size five. But when I was a kid I didn’t know I was a half pint who would never make it to pint size.
I thought I was big stuff.
Even before super heroes my favorite cartoon character was Underdog because even though Underdog was little he was mighty.
I wanted to be mighty.
I wanted life to be fair.
Luke 6:37 tells us, “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven.”
It seemed to me that according to scripture God wanted me to know that if I don’t judge, I won’t be judged. If I don’t condemn someone I won’t be condemned. And if I forgive, I will be forgiven.
As a child there were definite flaws in my thinking.
That’s because i was thinking if I don’t judge me neighbor, I won’t be judged.
I was thinking if I don’t condemn someone, they won’t condemn me.
I believed if I forgave someone, they would forgive me.
Do you see where this is going?
I automatically assumed that scripture meant that God would make my neighbors and friends respond to me in kind.
I thought it was a promise.
When I was young it didn’t occur to me that if I don’t judge my neighbor God will give me peace.
I didn’t think about how God would respond to me when I chose not to condemn my neighbor.
It didn’t occur to me that when I forgive, God will honor my act of forgiveness.
When I was young I wanted God to be a puppet master who made everyone respond like I wanted them to respond.
When I was young, I thought this was easy. I thought if I did the right thing everybody else would do the right thing back to me.
I didn’t think people would have the right to choose how they respond to me.
Fortunately for me, I eventually grew up. Without knowing the full implication of it, I told God when I was nine years old that I wanted to belong to Jesus.
Gradually, ever so gradually and gracefully God taught me one day at a time what it means to put my trust in God.
One day at a time I learned that when I choose not to judge someone, God smiles on me.
I found out that when I don’t condemn my neighbor when they make a really bad mistake, God hugs me and tells me He really loves me.
I discovered that when I forgive someone for breaking my heart, God will gently (ever so gently) begins to heal me of my broken heart.
In the process of choosing not to judge, I am offering grace. In the process of not condemning my neighbor I took the first baby step toward offering love to them. In the process of forgiving someone who broke my heart, I am turning the matter over to God and letting God be in control of healing. I believe that includes my healing and possibly their healing.
I learned that God’s grace is bigger than anything I can imagine. God’s love is deep and wide and endless. God’s forgiveness is utterly complete and unending.
I learned that two wrongs don’t make a right and when I choose God’s way, I AM the big winner.
Spiritual Practice: Grace, Love, and Forgiveness
Ask God to give you grace. Tell God you want His love more than anything else. Receive God’s complete forgiveness through Jesus. And be blessed.
In God, Deborah