Thursday, June 30, 2011

Judgement for bloggers

What does "as you judge, so will you be judged" mean for bloggers? (Matthew 7:1-2)

I've covered my issue with the application of this phrase in daily life, but I would like your help with another facet.

How do we, as bloggers, fit "not judging" into our work? We can espouse as many teachings as we want in our writing, but we can't control the choices other people make.

However, this is a cop-out:
"My decisions are for me, yours are right for you. We live in a world where fluffy unicorns eat candy corn out of your hand and leprechauns join you for milk and cookies after school."

In fact, this annoys me. I make plenty of mistakes, as do others.

But there is an ultimate Truth. God knows what will bring us the most fulfillment in our lives and several personal decisions will affect that outcome.

As bloggers, we preach to the choir most of the time. We fill the Internet with Catholic Christian teachings, trusting that someone who needs to will read them in our voice.

When I venture out into the real world and see friends who read my blog, I'm hypersensitive about how they interpret my words. I worry that those friends who disagree with me think I'm chronically judging them.

I don't want anyone to think I am condemning them (I am most certainly not!) by disagreeing with their choices, but I don't want to sit in silence, either.

The ultimate answer to my question is: Love always. If my actions are not loving, then I'm not following Jesus' commandment.

Where do YOU think this fits into our mission as bloggers? (Don't laugh, I think we're called to E-vangelize, too)


Jessica said...

In my experience, traditional evangelization is ineffective simply because, as you said, people are likely to feel condemned, and then they shut down.

In my daily life I try to preach the Gospel with my actions so that people will not be defensive but rather intrigued, so that they see what being a Christian can mean on a day-to-day basis and not just from the caricatures of the most extreme fundamentalists they might see in the news. I try to carry that same idea over to my blog (which is why it's named Faith Permeating Life). I think people are most likely to "tune in" to hear you talking about God when those messages are interwoven with thoughts on daily life, and not as a completely isolated topic. I try to be very open to people responding and disagreeing with me so that when I do put things out there that I believe to be truth, they feel like it's part of a conversation and not that they're being condemned.

That's my take on it :)

Julie Robison said...

It's important to be open to other arguments you may not present, but just because you do not agree with another person does not mean you are judging them. Taking up the cross includes the possibility of being misunderstood. We shouldn't judge other people, but God gave us reason, and we can make declarations based upon that knowledge.

Bryan said...

The idea of hating the sin, and loving the sinner has been a common theme lately in my prayers. Because the Christian message is so counter-cultural, it's a delicate balance. It becomes difficult to speak the Truth when so many people look at you as if you have 5 eyes and antennae coming out of you head.

The other thought that's been in my prayers as of late has been that, as Christians we don't follow a code, we follow a person. His name is Jesus. Everything we do should stem from our love for Him, and flow into our actions.

Have any of your friends called you out for any of your posts? One of the things that we talked about in our TOB sessions at our church was the importance of surrounding yourself with people who share the same core beliefs. Sure we are called to evangelize, but God also wants our happiness here and now. I've seen many of my friendships dissolve simply because we were moving in different directions. Sure it's sad when we lose friends, but maybe God has a different plan for them...

I didn't really answer your question, but does that make sense?

Chloe said...

It shouldn't be about casting the first stone, but ensuring that no one is fighting the wrong battle, or, hey, even holding their weapon incorrectly. You're right- we can never control the actions of another person. It's hard, but it is the essence of love, and the mystery of free-will. Our mission is ultimately to love, and sometimes, that love can be tough love. It can be done with charity, however, and ideally, it is an open conversation. While we are called to never forget the plank(s) in our own eye(s), as bloggers we have chosen to "e-vangelize" (great word!), and therefore have a certain responsibility amongst ourselves to make sure our messages are consistent and obedient.

The spill-over into real life friends can be rough. Letting go of the anonymity of a blog can be scary, especially when we discuss topics that are... loaded. I suppose at the end of the day, we just have to trust in Providence and hold tightly to the Truth.

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