John came without eating and drinking and they accused him of being possessed, and here comes Jesus, who eats and drinks and was accused a glutton, drunkard and friend of tax collectors.
The gospel reading from Matthew 11:16-19 echoes the same attitudes that sometimes still comes up in us, the tendency to look at only at what is wrong instead of looking what the other has done right. Just because we always see a certain person doing the same old bad habits, we already judge him to the point that when he does good things, we still find fault in what he has done.
It is not so much about brushing aside the wrongs, but more about acknowledging the good things the person has done.
The reading from Isaiah 48:17-19, if paraphrased today, says, “I am the God who had taught you for your own good and lead you to the place I have planned for you. If only you had listened to my instructions, you could have been fulfilling your dreams that I dreamed for you as well. If only you had just listened to me, but you choose to focus on others and what they are doing instead of focusing on me. You could have lived a full satisfying life, with a family that will keep your name long before you are gone.”
We might as well take note of this message before we ourselves will say “If only…” Before it’s too late, let us focus on what is good in others and encourage them to continue doing the same, instead of focusing on their faults and discouraging them. Let us build one another instead of tearing apart. There are so many things to do than just faultfinding.