There is a story of a young girl who watched her mother peer out of her window at the neighbor’s laundry hanging on line. “Humphh!” said the mother. “Look at her laundry. Who would hang such dirty laundry out there for everyone to see? She should be ashamed.” The young girl looked closer. She touched the window with her finger and looked at the dirt there. “Mama,” she said, “it’s not her laundry that’s dirty; it’s your window!” Too often we are so quick to judge others on their shortcomings. We focus on the “specks” of their lives. Meanwhile, our own windows are dirty. Jesus clearly tells us that we must first get rid of the “plank” in our own eye before we try to criticize others. He goes so far as to call us hypocrites when we do this. This very stern rebuke should be a taken as a serious warning not to judge others, but to instead judge our own behaviors.
And we pray:
Lord, help me to examine myself. Let me see the flaws in myself, instead of focusing on the flaws in others. Help me to clean up around my own back door and focus on pleasing You. Amen.