Mocking; October 16, 2019

Proverbs 14:6 The mocker seeks wisdom and finds none,
but knowledge comes easily to the discerning.

Proverbs frequently mentions mockers and mocking, because it’s a common thing. Ridicule is widely used as a weapon, and some people seem to invite it. However, the moment we mock we close our hearts and minds to whatever we might learn from the person or the situation. Often we can learn what not to do! Mocking is fundamentally a function of pride, because it is done from an imagined superior position. However, if we are discerning (the Japanese says “enlightened”) enough to be humble, we can see where we share some of the same weaknesses as the person we are considering. That way we can learn a lot! We are often tempted to think, “How could they be so stupid?” when honest reflection will tell us that we ourselves have been remarkably stupid at times. Humor is a valuable thing, but we must be careful not to let it get into mockery, into considering others as less than ourselves, or we will be choosing blindness that will cause us to fall.

I am ashamed to say that I have mocked many people and things over the years. Sometimes that was in reaction to being mocked myself, or out of a fear of being mocked, but that is no excuse. I have struggled with pride in many forms throughout my life, and I’m not through with either my life or that struggle! I must choose to respond to everyone with the grace that God has shown to me, thereby gaining knowledge of myself, of other people, and of the God who created us all. When I let pride pull me into mockery, I forfeit all of that.

Father, thank You for this reminder. Help me see myself and others with Your eyes, allowing You to use me to lift them up rather than put them down. Help me remember that a clever put-down diminishes me, even as it probably hurts the other person. May I be an unpolluted channel of Your love and grace, for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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