Beliefnet
Prayer, Plain and Simple

Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you. Matthew 7:12

And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? Matthew 7:3

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I might have a full floweret of broccoli in my teeth, but all I can see is the tiny sesame seed in yours. Jesus taught self-awareness, so why are so many of us believers more aware of others than we are of ourselves when it comes to weaknesses and flaws?

“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” is another way of saying, “Be the kind of person you wish others were to you.”

Want a spouse that is compassionate, attentive, forgiving, joyful, and faithful?

Be that.

Want a reliable, friend who is tuned-in?

Be one.

Want co-workers that are responsible, truthful, kind, and considerate of you?

Be that.

Want a parent that listens with empathy?

Be one.

We need to stop noticing everyone else’s imperfections and start seeing our own. The only way to this level of self-reflection and awareness is through the transforming power of Jesus. It’s just too easy to be critical of others and too hard to be hard on ourselves!

The pathway to change is through the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. How does that happen? By establishing Jesus as the leader of our lives day by day. You might say, “Well, I already made Jesus the Lord of my life when back in 1979.” Great! Well done! But have you made Him your Lord today? Today and everyday is a good day to submit to His loving kindness, to ask that His love be manifested in your heart every moment of every day.

First, we need to know we are loved and that our sins are not just forgiven, they are gone! That gives us something to be happy about! The Gospel is truly Good News! Armed with this Good News, we can speak the Good News to others, and tell them that there is no condemnation for those who are in Jesus. We can let the Word of God do it’s work in the lives of our loved ones, and we can take our critical thoughts and ideas, and get out of the way.

Sick of being a critical person, unhappy about the performance of everyone around you? Be the change you seek in others. Set your gaze above, and pray this plain and simple prayer.

Lord,

If you are even the slightest bit as critical of me as I am of others, I am toast. But You are not! I made up my mind that I was going to be like You, but I haven’t followed through with that vow very well. Perfect, though you are, Jesus, you said that you didn’t come to condemn the world. So why should I, as imperfect as I am? Why should I notice other people’s mistakes and inadequacies when I’m loaded with them?

Would you please forgive my arrogance?

Would you please make me new? Like You?

I receive Your forgiveness as well as Your cleansing power to transform me from a foe to a follower, from puffed-up to loved-up. From self-important to other-centric. From vain to insanely kind. From a grumbler to one who is humbler. From uppity to one who is abundantly caring. From toxic to philanthropic!

Have at my heart to new levels. Make me joyously unaware of other’s inadequacies and ever aware of my own.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen!

 

 

Photo credit: richard_north via Foter.com / CC BY

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