The Measure With Which You Measure

February 20, 2022

Our lives are filled with measurements of all kinds.  From the food we eat to the clothes we wear, there are tags and measurements.  We measure freshness by dates and packaging; we measure height and depth as milestones.  Since the Super Bowl last weekend we have not only seen teams be measured by time of possession, but also by points scored and penalties committed.  Commercials are ranked by groups, measuring their success to engage the community in buying or investing in their product. We can find an app for any kind of measurement.  The choices are limitless. The Olympics have done the same for us.  Beyond gold, silver and bronze medal counts, split seconds separate efforts of athletes competing in all aspects of winter sports.

Jesus invites us to His sobering words: The measure with which you measure, will be measured back to you.  When you choose to measure someone, that measurement now becomes the measurement upon yourself.  When we measure our neighbor though the lenses of intelligence or the lack there of, the measuring stick of God will then measure us in the same way compared to the benevolence of an all-knowing God.  If we choose the lenses of power, the measure with which we use God will use in the same way comparing us to the limitless power of an all-powerful God.  We do not stand a chance.  How we choose to scrutinize another because of race, gender, or wealth, will become the way God scrutinizes us.  This scripture for me is one that makes me sit up and take notice.  How do I judge my neighbor in my thoughts or in my words?  How do I comment upon them because of their views?  In the backdrop is God’s judgment upon myself.  This passage has been a place of great conversion for me. It challenges me to be less judgmental and more compassionate.  “Stop judging and you will not be judged.”  This should stop us in our tracks.  Who wants to be judged by God?  “Stop condemning and you will not be condemned.”  I surely do not want to be condemned so this challenges me to stop in my tracks when I want to judge and condemn another.

Jesus invites us to be generous with love, compassion and mercy.  He longs for us to be surrounded by His compassion and to give it away freely.  Judging and condemning narrows the focus of the abundance of God’s love He is waiting to pour into our lives.  When our focus is on comparisons and judging, we are missing how God wants to fill us with His love poured into our laps, overflowing.  We cannot receive this overflowing love if we are too busy judging, condemning and measuring up others.  The focus becomes them and not God.

Be generous; God is.

Fr. John