People’s Hearts


“In what must surely be one of the most ignored passages of the Bible, Paul wrote this two millennia ago:

As for myself, I do not care if I am judged by you or by any human court. I do not even judge myself. I know of no wrong I have done, but this does not make me right before the Lord. The Lord is the One who judges me. So do not judge before the right time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light things that are now hidden in darkness, and will make known the secret purposes of people’s hearts. Then God will praise each one of them. (1 Cor. 4:3–5 NCV)

That’s amazing. Think about what Paul was writing there: He doesn’t know anyone’s motives. Not even his own. Even if his own conscience was clear, that didn’t make him innocent. Paul was aware of his own inability to judge himself. He couldn’t be trusted. So, he said, leave the judging up to God. He’ll sort it out in the end.

This can’t be glossed over. Think about how taking this to heart could deflate our own anger, even before it takes hold. We have no idea what is in someone else’s heart. We don’t know the backstory. We don’t know what’s happening in his mind. We don’t know how her brain works. We think we do, sure, but we don’t.”

~ Brant Hansen, Unoffendable


Caring Community


“This leaves us with the urgent question: How can we be or become a caring community, a community of people not trying to cover the pain or to avoid it by sophisticated bypasses, but rather share it as the source of healing and new life? It is important to realize that you cannot get a Ph.D. in caring, that caring cannot be delegated by specialists, and that therefore nobody can be excused from caring. Still, in a society like ours, we have a strong tendency to refer to specialists. When someone does not feel well, we quickly think, ‘Where can we find a doctor?’ When someone is confused, we easily advise him to go to a counselor. And when someone is dying, we quickly call a priest. Even when someone wants to pray we wonder if there is a minister around.”

~ Henri Nouwen