“For if we would judge ourselves, we would not be judged.” 1 Corinthians 11:31
When I first read this verse, I felt a sneaky, sarcastic little thought creep into my mind, that said, “What did I get myself into!? This Christian life doesn’t look like a whole lotta fun! Now I’m resigned to a life of self-degradation, denial and criticism!” If that’s what you think, as I did, you’ve missed the point. I’ve come to understand that Jesus didn’t come to earth to get something from us. He came to get something to us. Truthfully, we don’t have anything to give Him. But He has much to give us!
The Christian life is all about total transformation. That transformation is from death to life, from sin to righteousness, from a cursed life to a blessed life, from slavery to sin to authority and freedom, and from hatred to love. So, when we judge ourselves, it’s not self-degradation. It’s simply an assessment that helps us to eliminate obstacles that are preventing our transformation and experiencing God’s best!
I remember when I first started playing baseball as a boy, I would jump out of the batter’s box at every pitch because I was afraid of getting hit by the ball. My father kept telling me to stay in the batter’s box, but I had another priority – self-preservation. One day, I arrived at a decision. I decided I would stay in the box… When I did, I connected with the ball! From that point on I began enjoying getting up to bat! Many years later, I looked back and remembered that day. In effect, I had assessed myself as acting like a coward and decided to stay in the box! Now, no one was judging me. Instead, they were congratulating me! I had to unload something, and that something was fear. It had robbed me long enough and I was frustrated about it! It was an obstacle that was preventing me from doing what I wanted to do!
What’s preventing you from being all you can be in God? Is it fear? Is it a grudge? Is it something in your past? Whatever it is, judge yourself and decide to come out from under it. You just might hit one out of the park and be liberated from the obstacles that have been hindering you for too long! Be open to God’s transforming love and power in your life. Honest assessments before God will carry you from where you are now to where you want to be! When you do what God says to do, you’re putting it in God’s hands, and He’ll be the One calling the balls and strikes!