Who Gave You the Gavel?

Why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye but don’t notice the log in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and look, there’s a log in your eye? Hypocrite! First take the log out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.

Matthew 7:3-5 HCSB

If you know me well enough by now, you know I have a deep abhorrence of hypocrites. (That’s just my being fancy and saying I don’t like judgmental people, lol). I pray daily for an open mind, and that God shows me the beauty in all things and people. Over the years I have grown to despise the tradition of religion and sought to understand God for myself. I recognized along the way that there are many people that put God in a box and so if you do not fit in that box, something must be wrong with you. After coming to terms with my calling, I struggled hard with this. Modern day preachers and prophets don’t fancy a woman speaking her views on God, let alone teaching others about God. Along with this, I have learned that if you do not look a certain way, talk like this or dress like that, you will garner a certain amount of sideways stares. I am about as different as they come, well not all the way. I have several tattoos, dress very fashionably at times, unique at others, love love love heels, and shy away from anything screaming tradition. So from this I am sure you know my plight, lol.

I love this passage because it reminds us to look first at ourselves. I’ll be the first to admit that I found flaw in everyone, having grown up to pick and point out other people’s flaws. That would be alright for a while, then when I got by myself and looked at myself, I would tear myself apart too, mainly because of the insecurities I had developed out of the things I had experienced growing up. Out of that birthed the need to protect and defend others, and to stand up for myself. The first person to say something disrespectful to me they would get their own tongue-lashing back, when I got older and stopped holding my tongue so much. Then as I grew tired of having to defend myself all the time, I realized the true source of the problem was the enemy and his efforts to discourage me from truly embracing what God wanted for me, which is relationship with himself and our brothers and sisters in Christ.

I will not sit here and write that I have a clean slate for my past. I have done my share of wrong, made my share of bad choices. I have hurt people and myself. But the one thing I have learned is that God forgives. Just as He is our ultimate judge, He also loves us so much that He will forgive our wrongs without need for anything in return. We are not the judge and jury (law school joke haha) so what gives us the right to slam the gavel on others? Now, there is a difference between bringing an issue before your brother or sister in Christ and talking about them and casting judgment. But the bittersweet part of all of this is that we can only learn the difference when we let God remove the blinders from our eyes that hide our truth. Don’t you want to see with clear vision? Remove your plank today and really see yourself as you are.

Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Matthew 7:1-2 NIV


You Can’t Expect Full-Time Blessings Having a Part-Time Faith

These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold–though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.
1 Peter 1:7 NLT

I am guilty of a part-time faith. I have believed God for things in compartments of my life and I have not trusted Him in other areas. But where did it get me? I was left at the same place, asking God for the same things, again and again.

We are in a season where we must be all or nothing with God. We cannot waste time wavering back and forth. James 1:6 says "But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind." (NLT) Either you are going to believe all the way, or not.

God recently worked on me with this. Growing up, I was raised to pay tithes. It was just something I had to do; when I got some money, I gave God His 10%. In most churches, it is taught as a fire and brimstone principle. If you don’t tithe, you will be cursed. Being a believer in Christ, I could not rest easy with this teaching because I believed that as a believer in Christ I was freed from all curses because He became a curse for me and thus took on my sufferings and punishments. (Gal 3:13, 1 Peter 2:24). I would pay my tithes almost begrudgingly, for fear of repercussions if I did not pay them.

It was the very first day of my detox, my full day of juicing, that God had this issue settled in my heart. I was talking to a friend in the ministry about my concerns. Almost instantaneously, his response was the age old response I have heard my entire Christian life. As he was talking and I found things contrary to his explanation, God spoke to me clear as day: "Marquita, it is an expression of your faith in Me, to trust Me with everything, even your money." Immediately I stopped arguing with him, and kept saying, everything is faith. Faith is everything, I have to trust God with everything. I vowed from that point forward that I would trust God with everything.

Yes, God will continue to bless you, for He rains down blessings on the just and the unjust. (Matthew 5:45) But if you want to see God really move in your life…honey! You HAVE to trust God with everything: with your relationships, with your business, with your finances, with your growth, with your family and friends, but with EVERYTHING!!!!

Stop wavering, stop believing in Him part-time…be all or nothing…and watch God work full-time for you! Have faith and believe!!

Then Jesus told them, "I tell you the truth, if you have faith and don’t doubt, you can do things like this and much more. You can even say to this mountain, ‘May you be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and it will happen. Matthew 21:21 NLT