Sunday, February 7, 2010
"I'm sorry about the mess. I came straight here from picking my kids up from daycare. I don't have a diaper bag ... I'm really sorry." The young mom looked at me with embarrassment. She watched her 2 year old son slide off the sofa in the credit union lobby ... leaving behind a wet stain.
I had a choice to make ... judge her ... or accept her just the way she was. Accept her 2 year old son, just the way he was ... dirty diaper and all ... or, I could let my actions and body language make her feel worse than she already did.
He had blond hair, blue eyes and an orneriness to top almost any little boy on earth. He was into everything, crawling on and off the chairs, pulling magazines and pencils off the table ... ornery. His mother kept apologizing as she rocked her infant daughter and tried to calm her 2 year old.
"It's ok, really. Honey, I've got three boys of my own. Don't apologize." I gave her my best smile and handed her son a pad of notebook paper and a small box of crayons.
"Thank you." She let out a sigh and her entire body seemed to melt.
I helped her resolve the problem on her bank account and she left with her children.
Long after she left, I was still thinking about her and those two children. What was it that struck me about this young woman? Why did my heart ache for her?
My heart ached because I saw something in her ... I saw in her eyes ... defeat. A defeat I recognized all too well. She'd been judged in the past and because of that judgement, she assumed I would be upset about the dirty diaper, upset about her ornery 2 year old ... upset about the smell her son left wherever his little body went. I wanted her to know ... it's ok ...
Little ones have accidents, they have bad days, they mess up and they even act "ugly" sometimes. And, sometimes ... sometimes ... someone sees your hurting mommy heart and they care ... they care enough to come along side you and help. They care enough to say ... "it's ok" and then to help clean up the mess from the dirty diaper. They help pick up the crayons when your child throws them in the middle of a temper tantrum. Sometimes, they see your child through God's eyes.
As God's children, we screw up. We have bad days, throw fits even. How is it that when we act this way ... we want God to look past our failures and see the good in us? But, when we see other people acting out ... we judge them ...
Have you ever been judged? How did it make you feel?
Think about that ... then make the choice to look beyond other people's faults and see them with God's eyes.
I've lived both ways. I've judged others and I've accepted others. Trust me ... you will be amazed at how good it feels to love someone. You'll be amazed at what you see when you stop and take time to look with the eyes of your Father.
Jeremiah 17:10 "I the LORD search the heart and examine the mind, to reward a man according to his conduct, according to what his deeds deserve."