Judgment or grace?


I was walking the wetlands. Three girls came running and shrieking by, probably scaring all the wildlife away on what I hoped would be a peaceful walk.

I felt the annoyance crawl up my stomach to my throat.

How could they be so rude? Where are their parents?

Then I passed them on a bench they decided to sit on. They were looking so cute. I remembered that age. I spent time running and yelling outside much my youth.

Instead of annoyance I had warmth in my heart.

We are so quick to judge, snark and criticize. It seems we don’t allow imperfection anymore – at least of others. We are taught to have self-compassion for ourselves at the same time assume that we are right. So a person can be brought down by one inartful statement or video showing their worst moment.

The next time you feel that “I am right, I can’t believe you did that. How could you?” ask when you have done or said something similar. Even in our thoughts. None of us are perfect. We can be human together.

I was writing this in the car after my walk with my windows open enjoying the summer breeze. Then a car pulled up playing rap music loudly with the bass up.

I started getting annoyed again briefly before remembering that just yesterday we were playing 80’s music in the Jeep with the windows down. I let go of the tension. I love the feeling in my body when I think of others with kindness.

It’s like the idea that you should only surround yourself with positive people. But, aren’t most people negative sometimes? Maybe the negative person needs a positive person around and your job is to be that positive person. You might be the only positive person in their lives.

Where do you see yourself judging others?

We need to give grace to others. Our world desperately needs more of this. I forgive…forgive me… are words to live by.


  • Lynette says:

    A beautiful way to explain grace, Beth. I will think of that word when annoyed now. My mother’s name was Grace. I never liked it and thoight it was old fashioned until I got back with Jesus.
    GRACE is God’s Redemption At Christ’s Expense

  • It’s so funny that you write about this.

    I was hiking a couple of months ago and across the way was this man playing very loud rap music. I go for hikes to get away from the noise, listen to my crunchy steps and here birds, not loud music.

    Oh well, nothing I could do.

    As I hiked I heard the music get louder and louder, he was catching up to me! GREAT! My hike is ruined!

    As he approached I noticed this huge smile on a young man. And as he passed he said ever so happy “Good morning!” He was beaming! I couldn’t help but feel shame for my thoughts I had just 10 minutes earlier.

    He asked about my dog and I asked if he’d been on the trail before. We struck up a conversation – him a young man in his 20’s and me a woman in my 40’s – the only thing we seemed to have in common was the hike and THAT was perfect.

    We ran into each other a couple of times on that trail, sharing stories and tips on hiking and where to go.

    He was delightful and I was happy to have met him.


  • Sue says:

    I love this Beth, thank you for beautiful food-for-thought for the day. ❤️

  • Beth Dargis says:

    I love these comments and the understanding! May we continue to extend grace to others.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *