I remember the fun times I have had on the playground with my friends growing up. We would play dodgeball at recess, we would play in the sandbox in the afternoon at my house, we would swing on the swings, well actually we would probably do anything but swing how they were intended to be used, we would pretend we were the Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers saving the world from evil, and so much more! We tend to forget the moments that in the midst of our joy that one of us would somehow get upset, frustrated, or even angry with one another when something happened in the game that did not go our way. We begin to call each other names and call each other out on the things we do not like about each other, however we fail to see the wrong in our own actions, which at the time may be very hypocritical in reference to what we are accusing others of.
Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
Matthew 7:3 NIV
Jesus clearly tells his followers to pay attention to the things in their own lives before accusing others! Sometimes, as Christians, we (including myself) do not hesitate to find the faults in those around us and then have the audacity to call them out on it and spread that fault out to others. The “speck” in other’s people’s eyes are so much less significant than the plank in ours!
Plank? That’s rather large! I remember one time when I was helping my father cut some wood that he was going to use for a project in the house that some sawdust had made it’s way into my eye (granted this probably happened many times before and after this occurrence). Either way, that sawdust hurt, it made my eyes tear up, it stung and it was very hard to focus on anything until all of the sawdust was out of my eye! I needed to stop what I was doing so that I could point all of my attention towards getting the sawdust out of my eye so I can see clearly again. This is the same concept. When we have sin in our lives, it clouds how we perceive life, how Jesus wants us to see.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.
Hebrews 12:1-2 NIV
This is why it is important to go to church, to surround ourselves with people who are focused on Jesus. The wisdom of Solomon point’s out that we as followers of Christ can use each other to our advantage: to help us remove the plank from our own eyes with the help and guidance of Jesus so that way we can go out and help the world remove the specks from their own eyes.
As iron sharpens iron,
so one person sharpens another
Proverbs 27:17 NIV
Jesus, help me to see the planks in my own life. I don’t want to be quick to judge and pry at the speck’s in other’s lives when I am not perfect in any way, shape or form. Thank you for loving me no matter what. Amen.