When We Get Snarky, Judgmental, and Unkind

You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else…

for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things… Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, forbearance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance? Rom. 2:1–4 NIV

Heavenly Father, this passage convicts us and underscores how much we need the Gospel every day. The call to love others as Jesus loves us keeps sending us to you for fresh grace and more power.

We are selective lovers, Father. We’re not equal-opportunity dispensers of your compassion and kindness. It’s not difficult for us to shower “the riches of your kindness, tolerance, and patience” on people of our “tribes,” persuasion, and worldview.

But we can be easily judgmental towards people whose politics, brokenness, and values are different than ours. But you haven’t appointed us to be judge and jury of anyone. Responsible discernment is one thing, mean-spirited criticism quite another. Calling people to consistency is a good thing; calling down fire from heaven on anyone isn’t our prerogative.

May your kindness lead us to repent quicker and deeper, Father. Help us grieve our self-righteousness and sins more than we’re offended by anybody else’s. Give us bigger hearts and thicker skin, longer fuses and Gospel-responses, the perspective of heaven and words of healing.

Jesus took our judgment on the cross; and now you love us with the fullness of compassion, acceptance, and delight. The greatest non sequitur in life is for us to “cop an attitude,” resent, and stay smug towards anyone. Supersize our humility and gentleness, and deepen our compassion for fellow broken sinners. So very Amen we pray, in Jesus’ righteous and loving name.