Lenten Journey 2012: My Lingering Judgment

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I spent last Lent really focusing on a journey toward being less judgmental.  As a whole, I would say it was tremendously successful and, to date, I find myself happier and calmer simply because I waste far less time worrying about what others choose to do.  I’ve learned to ask myself some key questions if I feel myself getting riled up:

  • Is this a big deal or a little deal?
  • Even if it IS a big deal, how is this impacting me or my family?
  • Are there grave consequences?
  • Could this be an issue of opinion rather than “truth”?
  • Does it matter if I don’t agree at all with this theory/process/action?

 

Very often?  I’m able to just dismiss it and stop fretting.  It simply DOES NOT MATTER if everyone sees eye-to-eye with me on every issue or method and there is no reason under the sun we can’t still get along.  That’s been very, very freeing for me.

 

I still struggle with two things, though… a lot.  The first?  I am not so good at letting it go when I feel I am being unfairly judged.  I have a much harder time shaking that off.  I guess I have some twisted idea that, if I’m willing to be open-minded about how you feed your children, I should be entitled to the same grace.  Life just doesn’t work like that and, frankly, I need to get thicker skin and get over it.  I’m working on that.  And I’m learning to care less and less what some people might think of me.

 

The second?  This is super hard for me to admit, but I’m just going to be very honest with you all:  I still judge people who are pro-abortion or who have had abortions in the past.

 

That’s awful.  I know it is.  And it’s just not my place to judge.  I can have strong beliefs and convictions and will advocate ’til the end of my days for these precious babies, but it is not, and will never be, my place to judge.  But I do.  My opinion of women I know in real life has been forever tainted after having learned of choices they made in the past.  And that upsets me.  And shames me.

 

This Lent, I will be kicking off the season on Ash Wednesday with hourly prayers for the unborn– my passion for protecting the innocent will not be wavering.  I may post reminders on Facebook and Twitter if you’d like to join me in that, and I will be posting some prayer options right here in case you’re one who likes a little structure (like me).

 

For the remaining thirty-nine days, I want desperately to work on this side of me that just can’t seem to overcome judgment.  I will be seeking out some stories from women who’ve walked a walk I’ve never been in.  I will be asking for God’s help as I attempt to invite more love and compassion into my heart to displace the angry judgment that currently resides there.

 

I welcome your suggestions or insights for materials for me to read, people I should contact, or even specific Scripture that might benefit this journey…

 

Because the journey toward letting go of judgment?  Is never-ending.  And my work is far from done…

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6 comments to Lenten Journey 2012: My Lingering Judgment

  • mlearley

    As you begin your prayers during Lent for the unborn babies, I wanted to pass along this blog that my cousin-in-law posted on facebook. This Christian woman is carrying a baby with a deadly disease who may not make it after birth…my cousin-in-law was told the same thing, her daughter is now 3 1/2 years old. So if you want to add this woman and her family to your prayers for the unborn babies, I’m sure she would appreciate it.

    http://carryinganna.wordpress.com/

  • Bravo! Thank you for your transparency! It’s refreshingly inspiring!

  • Kelley

    I am not writing to be critical. In fact, I understand where you are coming from when you speak of having judgements toward women that have chosen to have abortions. I write to may be feel better myself. I had a non-elective abortion 5 years ago this summer as my baby was “not compatible with life.” It was terribly hard and in the process I met some women that were making the choice to have abortions. Putting a face and story with this process was eye opening to me..doesn’t change my mind for myself but it definitely made me think. It makes me sad to be one of the women you speak of but I am. Best of luck as you make your way during Lent!

    • I appreciate you sharing your story here, Kelley, and I would never in a million years read your comment as critical. I am very grateful for your sharing the perspective you have gained because of the difficult journey you’ve travelled (one I cannot understand and would never claim to.) While I am unapologetically pro-life “no matter what”… I also wouldn’t say you are one of “the women I speak of.” There are two, in particular, who leap to my mind and their decisions, by their own admissions, were made out of fear and because a pregnancy was inconvenient at the time. Your situation was far, far different and my heart breaks for the hurt you’ve had to endure. Please don’t think I’m judging you for even a moment. I do believe what you say, though, in that putting a face and a story alongside it would be eye-opening. I hope for this Lent to be a real time of growth for me– I’m hopeful.

  • By all means share the resources you find because I have not been able to let go of my judgmental thoughts at all….I can not even believe it’s already Lent again!

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