We're All Hypocrites

There are two ways we can respond to the accusations of Harvey Weinstein's sexual assaults:

  1. We can offer comfort to the victims of sexual assault and speak out against it, or
  2. We can ignore all that and just call one another hypocrites.
It’s easier to expose hypocrisy than systemic rot. And that means problems that can be named, and the people who name them, become the most obvious targets when their ideals are failed.
— Dara Lind

To be honest, the second option seems more fun. If I can point out that my political opponents are hypocrites, I make a strong argument that they cannot be trusted. Of course, it's all just empty theater that does not do anyone any good. It just hardens people's hearts against one another.

The fact is, we're all hypocrites. Everyone pretends that they are better than they actually are. We all try to hide our baser instincts to appear noble. We all believe the lie of our false self.

Yelling out "You hypocrites!" might have worked for Jesus (see Matthew 23). But before you call anyone a hypocrite, remember these two things: you are not Jesus, and he is talking to you.

Center you mind and body by breathing in God's mercy and breathing out God's love. Allow you breathing to become calm, free, and effortless.

Read the Scripture verse to the right. Do not analyze it for meaning. Rather, just settle on a single word or phrase.

Read the verse again. What is are the "pieces of wood" in your eye? Bring to mind times when you have not lived up to your ideals.

Read the verse a third time. What would you like to say to our Lord? If you feel the need to ask for forgiveness, ask for forgiveness. If you need to ask for a grace to live up to your values, ask for that grace.

Matthew 7:3-5

“You look at the bit of sawdust in your friend’s eye. But you pay no attention to the piece of wood in your own eye. How can you say to your friend, ‘Let me take the bit of sawdust out of your eye’? How can you say this while there is a piece of wood in your own eye? You pretender! First take the piece of wood out of your own eye. Then you will be able to see clearly to take the bit of sawdust out of your friend’s eye. 

Read the verse a fourth time and rest. Allow the Lord to gaze on your with mercy and love. If your mind wanders, simply recall the word or phrase that jumped out to you the first time you read it.

Read the verse a final time. How might you imitate Jesus' humility in the day to come?

Close with this prayer or one of your own: Lord, give me the strength to be true to my ideals. Teach me how to forgive myself when I fall short. Give me the grace to be patient and kind to others when they fail to live up to the ideals they profess. Amen.