Many decisions we make simply because it’s what we want to do, or perhaps it’s the popular thing to do. But a righteous judgment is not dependent on our own personal preferences and desires. A righteous judgment rests on a standard of truth and goodness beyond ourselves.
Of course, this is not always easy to discern and apply. We want what we want. And if we have the freedom to choose, it only makes sense we would make the choice that gets us what we want.
And certainly we’re not alone here. Most people simply do whatever seems right in their own eyes.
But as we grow in maturity and faith we learn to make righteous judgments.
For instance, there might be a financial decision that neither we nor our wife are happy to make. But it is the best decision to steward what we’ve been given. And so we make a decision to be good stewards even when it comes with a high personal cost for ourselves.
We might also be tempted to pursue certain sinful relationships or activities. And we’re torn because part of us wants to relish in our desires while another part knows this is not okay. A righteous judgment commits to God’s best in the long run and not to the temporary pleasures of the moment.
Likewise, there are times in which we go to work, discipline our kids, and love our enemies, not because we feel like doing it, but because it’s the right thing to do.
Our marriages, families, and communities all suffer when we get stuck simply fighting for our own selfish interests. Developing a righteous judgment allows us to see and pursue a higher good that blesses all.
Look beyond your own self-interest and learn to develop a righteous judgment. However difficult in the moment, this opens the door for much life and goodness in the long run.