Judgmental, Arrogant, and Mockulatory
Now there was in Joppa a disciple named Tabitha, which, translated, means Dorcas. Acts 9:36
Today’s passage tells of Aeneas and Dorcas, one healed of paralysis and the other raised from the dead. I must admit that their names always make me laugh. One sounds unfortunately like a body part and one sounds like an insult we used as kids. What stupid names. I’m not proud of it, but in reading the story, I find myself making fun of people who’ve been dead for 2,000 years. I’m not mature.
In the city yesterday, I was pontificating on the passage, when I saw a man at the gas station who had made a lot of what I considered to be strange and permanent alterations to his body. I immediately became judgmental and mockulatory (I know that’s not a word, but it should be). What an idiot. He looks so stupid. Coincidentally – or rather arranged by God – I happened to run into the exact same individual an hour later at a coffee shop. We recognized each other and he gave me a friendly smile and “Hi”. That small act of kindness flayed open my conscience as my judgmental nature was laid bare. From that small interaction, it was obvious that he was the nice one and that I was the ridiculous jerk.
I’m ashamed to admit it, but when I see something that is unlike me, it’s natural – but horrible – for me to be profoundly arrogant and condescending. I almost make it part of my faith to have short cropped hair, nice clothes, and no giant discs in my earlobes. Anyone who doesn’t fit my description as normal then, becomes a target of my judgment and mockulation (also not a word). How stupid. What a heathen.
The truth is, this arrogance isn’t only profoundly immature, but is distinctly un-Christian of me. Man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart (1 Samuel 16:7). God doesn’t judge based on different sounding names or outward appearance and neither should I. In fact, I shouldn’t judge at all.
I’m still profoundly immature though. Just because arrogance is natural for me however, doesn’t mean I shouldn’t work on it. A mature faith keeps its eyes on God, attempting to see others as he sees them. If I want that kind of faith, then daily, I must choose humility and kindness, abandoning my ridiculous arrogance and judgmentalism.