JUDGEMENT AND PERCEPTION

It’s very easy to feel like you’re better than the next person. Maybe because comparing lets you know how well you are doing and soothes your
conscience. It’s natural to judge a matter, and formulate assumptions to why that lady is begging on the road…

beside triplet children

Or why that man is living with that lady. Like coming to fast possible conclusions about everything we see, somehow makes us smart,
experienced, conscious people.

But the truth?
There could be many reasons why something is happening the way it is. Our judgements of personalities and actions could be wrong, and very wrong. Many times, they are half-baked because of what we think we know;
like thinking that every young man in his 30’s living with his parents is lazy,
every lady who hasn’t received her healing “doesn’t have enough faith.”

Like thinking that this guy is so deceived, he still believes he should welcome the Holy Spirit.
Like thinking that wearing jeans or ripped jeans is the most irresponsible wear on earth, for only sons of the devil.
Like thinking we could have done better if we were in a fellow’s shoes.

WRONG!

We may not fail in the area we so judge, but we fail, because we are frail.

Sometimes, we judge because we haven’t been in similar situations. Who even gives us this standard to judge? To condemn?
Jesus said, “…if any of you is without sin, let him be the first to cast a stone.

Because we are lost in our own ways, assuming that for one reason or the other, we are in a better position to condemn another, we are more effectively breaking souls than healing them. Those eyes burning with judgement, warning of a terrible future, and hell.

Yet, we profess Christ.

We say we are born of love, and yet we say people are beyond help.
We feel that some persons are not to be seen with us.
Our Lord wasn’t ashamed to be seen with “sinners.”
Our Lord sat and ate with sinners.
Our Lord spoke compassionately with sinners, they dared to ask, “You seem to be a prophet.”
No threats of brimstone from our Lord.
No judgements from our Lord, except towards hypocrites who concentrated on appearances.
No casting away from our Lord who asks that all come as they are.

Our Lord Jesus Christ who laid his life down for not just my neighbour in sin, but for me too,
who was undeserving.

My Lord teaches me to love.
My Lord teaches me to love without reason.
My Lord teaches me to look beyond appearances and laws.
My Lord teaches me to place compassion over judgement.
My Lord teaches me to bear my brother’s burden, and to do so in meekness, because I…

I am not beyond temptation.

I have the nature of God, and I consciously choose love and compassion over judgement, perception, and inaccurate conclusions.

– Buzhoo
(c) 2020

I HATE COOL AND SWEET

For some reason, I detest cool, sweet, and smooth. Here’s why: when they settle too long, they become lukewarm, sour, and ugly. They stink. They turn worthless.

Then they become poison.

I would rather carry live flames in my arms. I’d rather they burn and sear my delicate skin and roast my plump flesh to ashes.

I crave the blood to soak my bruised face, that front of handsomeness that assures me falsely, that flimsy foundation of confidence. I would give everything to be on fire, to be a lamp, a candle’s burning thread, consumed to give light to a world being killed by sweetness, sweetness of the kind that rots the soul.

My fear isn’t for the fire that sinks my swag and shatters my claims on being ‘cool’. What I do fear is the inferno of coolness itself, the molten dissolution the world considers sugary, the fraud that embraces the tongue with caramel lather, only to steal its sense of taste.

Don’t be deceived into thinking that love is sweet. It isn’t. It isn’t bitter either. Love’s very presence renders taste secondary. The stronger it is, the less interested we are in what is does to our taste buds- whether it makes them tremble with excitement, shudder in awe, or retreat in terror.

When we are so far gone in love, it is Love itself- not its sweetness or sharpness -that consumes our being.

When you think that love can only be sugary, you will believe that reproof and compassion do not belong together. You will believe that a loving God could never damn a sinner to eternal torment. You will be alright with replacing the one true God with a sky dwelling grand-daddy figure too cowardly to correct the wrongdoings of his grandchildren.

When you think that love is only hugs and kisses, without rules or toughness, you will more easily wander off into dangerous openness, that vast but counterfeit ‘freedom’ called hell, the eternal coldness which lies at the end of all pursuit of crowd-pleasing ‘coolness’ for the sake of it.

We can reach beyond shallow sweetness to take hold of the exhilarating, all-consuming roller coaster of intense joy and deep-cutting anguish that true living brings us. That’s because in the midst of it all we are sure that a God who loves us fiercely will give His own life to preserve ours. Even if it means snatching us from the flames of cool with some degree of compassionate force.

 

©Ikenna Nwachukwu