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LeslieAnn

Struggle between compassionate and judgmental attitudes

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Raised in strict fundamental Baptist Church since 4 yrs of age...left in twenties after college to attend a sound Bible-based nondenominational church.  My former church had “all the answers” and everyone else was wrong.  I attended Bob Jones University which I disliked immensely...another story where they had “all the right answers too.”

The judgemental approach of that former church almost made me throw the baby (salvation/Christ) out with the bath water but b\c of my illness I knew I needed God in my life to continue in life and endure.  B/c my former pastor focused on the OT God and His fury rather than adding the love of Christ and his sacrificial death that covers our sin, mentally our minds were fixed not on love but judgement.

My major internal battle is that I am very compassionate as a person in heart (one of my spiritual gifts) but can be very judgmental in mind.  So basically a war arises.  I believe it has been from a faulty belief system yet how do I unravel it all??

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15 minutes ago, Yowm said:

I could see this also being written from the other perspective as well.

"Raised in a loose nondenom Church since 4 yrs of age...left in twenties after college to attend a sound Bible-based fundamental Baptist  church.  My former church had “no solid answers” and everyone else was just as uncertain.  I attended Bob Jones University which I loved immensely...another story where they had “sound answers too.” (I could continue)

You see, you were being absolute and judgmental in your assessment, the very thing you were condemning, maybe that is where your war arises?

Yes. I agree.  After being in a judgmental church you became warped that way.  My formative years were spent under that.  But the response falls rather flat in that I am struggling to win this war and live this Christian life properly and I need some advice and one or two answers.  I don’t want to be this person and it is not Christlike.

Edited by LeslieAnn

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We all need to remember "to speak the truth in love."Ephesians 4:15.  Maybe you can concentrate on that verse and others like it.  There are other good verses in Ephesians and elsewhere on kindness.   If we all concentrate on being more loving and kind before we speak, it will help us all.

We don't agree with sin but we can seek to be kind and love our neighbors as ourselves.

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That was helpful.  Thank you for the advice/scripture.  I have a verbally abusive mother which is very hard to deal with.

forgiveness is such a challenge!

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14 hours ago, LeslieAnn said:

  I have a verbally abusive mother which is very hard to deal with.

forgiveness is such a challenge!

very true....the Lord has told me He wants you to receive Ps 147

 He heals the brokenhearted
    and binds up their wounds.
He determines the number of the stars
    and calls them each by name.

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19 hours ago, LeslieAnn said:

My major internal battle is that I am very compassionate as a person in heart (one of my spiritual gifts) but can be very judgmental in mind.  So basically a war arises.  I believe it has been from a faulty belief system yet how do I unravel it all??

Learn to see yourself as God sees you and other people as God sees them.  You are a unique treasure, work of art, and creation of God.  You are meant to reflect His glory in a way unique to you.   Each person you see is a unique creation of God meant to reflect His glory in a way unique to them.  Sin, the world, outside influences, the enemy, etc. have marred and corrupted that unique treasure and work of art that God intends for us to be.  Over our lives, we've all learned to put on a series of masks to fit in with family, colleagues, friends, classmates, church, society, and every other group we are part of.  Often, when we look in the mirror, we do not see the person God meant us to be, but rather all of the expectations and pressures that have been put onto us (including from other Christians) and how we measure up to those things.  Often in Christian circles, we are often taught to define ourselves by those things we have in common with other Christians and by what use we are in terms of what we are good at doing and by what things the Christians around us tell us we are supposed to be doing.  It's my observation that it is rare in the body of Christ for people to be given any practical guidance for discovering the unique person God means for them to be.

The person who God made us to be is something much deeper and fundamental than gifts and talents.  Gifts and talents are tools for us to use; they are not who we are.  For over 30 years as a Christian, I defined myself via my gifts and talents and my value by how effectively I was using those gifts.   About 10 years ago, God put me out into a desert with no opportunity to use my gifts and talents and I was completely lost.  He put me in front of a mirror and I had no clue who I was looking at.  He took the next couple years opening my eyes to who He made me to be.  I found that who He made me to be was so much more than gifts and talents.   After I emerged from the desert, I had a much clearer sense of who God made me to be; my gifts, talents, education, and experiences all became tools to be skillfully wielded to free others to be who God intends for them to be.  One consequence of this is that I now see everyone else so differently.  I no longer look at the gifts, talents, and behaviors (both good and bad), but rather, I try to catch glimpses of that unique treasure and work of art of God hiding behind the masks and do what I can to help bring that person out of their shell.

I do not write this to lessen the atoning work of Christ nor the ongoing work of the Holy Spirit in our lives.  I write this to move our focus toward God's purpose in each person's life.  It is about each of us learning to walk closely with God as the unique person He intends for us to be.  It is not about trying to force everyone around us (and ourselves) into a particular cookie cutter of what we or someone else thinks a Christian is supposed to be.  It is about being freed from bondage, sin, and anything that holds us back from being the unique individual that God intends for us to be in Christ.

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Hi LeslieAnn, You sound a lot like I was 20 or more yrs ago. I'm trying to figure out how I changed.

I'm compassionate by nature but in my fathers side of the family everyone is judgemental. They would get together and pick out everyone's faults, (not their own). At 40ish I had become judgemental and I didn't even know I was doing it. Are you aware you're being judgemental when you're doing it or not. I fell in love with a woman who had many issues and I only wanted to help her. She is the person who made me aware of myself. I forced myself to change so she wouldn't stop talking to me. For yrs I never said anything without re-thinking it 3 or 4 times.

I think I learned to forgive by realizing how imperfect I am. I think it was Socrates who said "know thyself". I made that my mission back then. I bet the things you're most critical of in others are traits you have too. As humans we have a knack for seeing in others what we hate in ourselves and then blaming them.

Then in the early 90's I noticed something in Paul's epistles I never did before, even though I had read them. Paul is telling 1 of his churches how they should behave and speak to each other. He said build each other up with your words, don't tear them down. If a buddy was wearing unwashed torn pants, I used to say you need new pants man. I learned to say either nothing or I have pants like that too, or something to show compassion.

With judging, Jesus said the Father will judge us as we judge others. Keep reminding yourself of that and you'll stop judging. Although, remind yourself that the church you grew up in was not obeying God, endeavor to not be like them. Realize there's a difference between judging and evaluating whether or not something is of God.

It is very hard when we were taught so many wrong things as kids and told they are the correct things. It happened to me as well as you. Forgive yourself as you learn what is right, but never use it as an excuse to keep being what you know is wrong.

I hope I helped a little, it was hard to put this into words. Finally, make up your mind as to how you want to be and you will get there.

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