How do you see those around you? Are you quick to pass judgements? Do you judge the person that walks past you based off of their appearance, or perhaps one action that you see them do? Or do you take the time to second-guess and think a bit deeper? It is very important that we see those around us first and foremost as children of God, cherished and loved and created unique and perfect in God's image and likeness. However, it is so easy to fall into the trap of judging those around us based off of first impressions, not looking any deeper or really taking the time to show them love in some form. God calls us to love all people, and not to pass judgements, as He is continually forgiving and loving of us fully. We too are called to act in the same way, loving even the stranger. Consider how you treat those around you. Are you always loving?
Today's Gospel states: "But Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. Early in the morning he came again to the temple; all the people came to him, and he sat down and taught them. The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery, and placing her in the midst they said to him, 'Teacher, this woman has been caught in the act of adultery. Now in the law Moses commanded us to stone such. What do you say about her?' This they said to test him, that they might have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. And as they continued to ask him, he stood up and said to them, 'Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.' And once more he bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. But when they heard it, they went away, one by one, beginning with the eldest, and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. Jesus looked up and said to her, 'Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?' She said, 'No one, Lord.' And Jesus said, 'Neither do I condemn you; go, and do not sin again'" (John 8: 1-11).
In today's reading, we see that God wants us to be forgiving and loving, not judgemental. We all sin and have imperfections that bring us down. However, God forgives us and loves us fully, giving us many chances to change and be the best versions of ourselves. We too are called to be forgiving and accepting of others, no matter their faults or sins. God sees the love and beauty that shines through each of us and gives us chance after chance to show that beauty in the world, despite our faults. We too need to help others see the good in themselves and to shine, forgiving and loving them. Take some time today and ask God to help you love as He has loved you.
Today we pray:
Thank you for creating me in Your very image and likeness and loving me despite my sins. I ask that You help me to love those around me in the same way and help me to be forgiving and to love, not passing judgements. I pray in Your most holy name, Amen.