logs and stones . . . and I have them both. I have logs in my eyes and stones in my pockets. This is a dangerous combination to be sure. If I don’t get the logs out of my eyes, I will not be able to see clearly enough to throw my stones with any accuracy, now will I? And I want to hit my intended target, don’t I? Or maybe, when I can see more clearly, I will see that I have no business throwing stones at other people. In the meantime, in my current state, I am a dangerous combination of poor vision and plenty of ammunition.
Jesus proposed the solution for both problems. He said in Matthew 7 “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank (log) in your own eye? . . . You hypocrite, first take the plank (log) out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your bother’s eye.” (of course when I’m seeing more clearly, I will realize what I thought were logs in others’ eyes, were only specks all along)
Now when I began to lose my logs, I began to see more clearly. And what I see more clearly are my own shortcomings and my own sins. I began to feel the weight of the stones in my pockets that I carry with me into every situation wherever I go. I began to realize I have no good use for them.
Jesus confirmed this when he spoke to those who brought before Him a woman they had caught in adultery. They wanted to stone her, as their law commanded them to do. But first they asked Jesus what He thought should be done. His reply? “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” (this should be my first clue that I’m never going to need or use my stones for throwing at others, so why am I still carrying them around? they are weighing me down)
Now when they heard Jesus’ answer, those in the crowd began to leave, one by one, until no one was left but Jesus and the woman accused of adultery. It was then that Jesus asked her, ” ‘Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?’ ‘No one, sir,’ she said. ‘Then neither do I condemn you,’ Jesus declared. ‘Go now and leave your life of sin.’ ” (John 8:7-11)
And in that quiet moment it was over. With one simple instruction Jesus had rescued her from the angry crowd and given her back her life. She had been brought to Jesus against her will, a woman condemned to die by others – she left, a woman forgiven, freed from her sin, rescued and redeemed by Jesus. No one had a stone to throw that day and neither do I. It’s time to empty my pockets of their stones.
That’s why Jesus came in the first place. “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.” (John 3:17)
“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.” (Luke 19:10)
I will spend my lifetime trying to lose the logs from my eyes and to empty the stones from my pockets. But every little bit I leave behind gives me clearer vision and a lighter load for the journey ahead. I need both.
sincerely, Grace Day