IN one of the Lenten weekday readings, we have been
reminded that we have to judge fairly. From the Book of Leviticus, we
read: “You shall not act dishonestly in rendering judgment. Show
neither partiality to the weak nor deference to the mighty, but judge
your fellow men justly.” (19,15)
It again just shows us that we actually are made to judge,
but to judge fairly. Judging is an unavoidable and indispensable
operation of our intellect that is meant to know people and things in
So, we just have to learn to judge fairly, because that
Christian injunction not to judge people refers more to when we judge
people rashly or unfairly. It does not mean that we should not judge
at all, because that would be impossible and directly goes against our
To judge people fairly, we need to see to it that charity
always prevails. And this can begin by always thinking well of
everyone. The reason for this is simply the fact that we are all
children of God. We are all object of his divine love that goes all
the way to saving us from our sin by God becoming man and that
God-man, Jesus Christ, accomplishing our redemption by bearing all our
sins on the cross.
This attitude of thinking well of others, including those
who we do not know and even those who commit mistakes, who offend us,
who consider themselves in human terms as our enemies…this attitude of
thinking well of them should serve as the constant default page in our
life. However the situation and our relations with others are, we
should just think well of them.
This will require some effort, of course. In fact, a whole
gamut of virtues is needed. We have to learn how to be patient, how to
handle our emotions especially when we are contradicted, rejected or
offended, how to disagree with others while keeping charity always
In this, we have to see to it that we don’t lose our grip
on the eternal truths about ourselves so we don’t get lost in the
unavoidable drama in life, and fall at the mercy of our passions and
human and worldly forces.
That’s why we need to pray always, to be in touch with God
always, asking for his grace and continually developing the virtues.
We have to learn how to settle differences and correct mistakes and
injustices always in the context of charity. Charity will always
include justice. Without charity, justice cannot be lived.
To be sure, it’s when we abidingly think well of the
others, irrespective of the situation, that we can manage to see
things more objectively and judge, decide and act more fairly.
Yes, we will experience suffering. This should not be
surprising, given the condition that we all are in. But if suffered
with and in Christ, that suffering will always do us good, maturing
and purifying us, leading us to a deeper understanding of things and
to better cope with the many mysteries of life.