Henri Nouwen wrote, "To the degree that we accept that through Christ we ourselves have been reconciled with God we can be messengers of reconciliation for others. Essential to the work of reconciliation is a nonjudgmental presence."
He goes on to remind us that we are not sent to the world to judge, to condemn, to evaluate, to classify, or to label. "When we walk around as if we have to make up our mind about people and tell them what is wrong with them and how they should change, we will only create more division."
Jesus says it clearly: "Be compassionate just as your Father is compassionate. Do not judge; ... do not condemn; ... forgive" (Luke 6:36-37). And there is good reason behind this statement. Jesus points out that we too will be judged, we too can be condemned by others, but we can also be forgiven.
This is a very powerful call to show compassion to those who we are most intimate with, as well as people we know nothing about. It frees us from being snarky or ill-tempered, jealous or petty, or any other negative emotion that will tear at the core of who we are and what God has called us to be. Most importantly, it frees us to live with joy and compassion, love and forgiveness, and gives us a front row seat to the greatest show on earth...life.
I believe Nouwen sums it up best when he said, "In a world that constantly asks us to make up our minds about other people, a nonjudgmental presence seems nearly impossible. But it is one of the most beautiful fruits of a deep spiritual life and will be easily recognized by those who long for reconciliation."