“If you judge people, you have no time to love them.” ~ St. Teresa of Calcutta
When I was much younger, I thought that there would be no end to the number of days that we had. Even though I had experienced the death of family or neighbors, my youth informed me that those deaths, while tragic, were somehow a fluke. I was going to live a long, long time. I think that is the position most any young person adopts. It is probably good that we do so because it helps us face so many things in our youth.
As I grow older, however, I find that I am not aging quite as gracefully as I would have hoped. Between a heart damaged by a virus and osteoarthritis eating at my joints and spine, I sometimes wonder about both the number of my days as well as the quality of my days. Time, then, becomes more of an issue that it had been when I was young. I now realize that we am not going to live forever and that there is a limit to our days on earth.
If that is the case, then, you would think that we would spend each and every moment of our lives doing good and being upright people. If we judge people, there is no time to love them. And time, indeed, is critical. We should not waste our time doing things that are unproductive: hating, judging, hurting, tearing down, and the like. We should be using every moment of our time loving, guiding, healing, and building up.
Mother Teresa of Calcutta focused on a people that truly had no time left. She went into the streets and gathered up those who were lying in the gutters dying. She wanted their last moments on earth to be filled with peace and love. She wanted to provide a respite from their pain and a moment of care rather than have them experience the derision of those walking by them, unwilling to help.
We may not have people in our communities lying in the gutters waiting to die. But we have people who have been ripped apart by hurtful words, by racism, by lack of respect, and by scorn. We have people that have been derided by others because of ethnicity and cultural differences. We have people who have been adjudged as worthless. Some of the judging against the people affected above has been done by us.
Let’s quite wasting time hating and hurting, judging and holding down. Instead, let’s fill our time loving. As Mother Teresa proved, even at a very late stage in people’s lives, love still made all the difference in their world.
FAITH ACTION: If someone is suffering because of your judgment toward them, consider a change of mind and a change of heart.