Snow Covered License Plates. Watch Out for the Beam!

It is amazing how one can act foolishly, especially when one has as limited of a perspective as I do!

It was mid-February, and it had snowed hard during the night. Around noon, when the weather decided to improve somewhat, we found ourselves on our way to a local restaurant. Our cars had been safely tucked into their garage during the storm, thus saving us the hassle of having to "clean" them before setting out. As a result, I could set my mind completely on anticipating the nachos that this restaurant was famous for. Suddenly I noticed the car in front of me. I was aghast of shock, and I blurted out: "Look at the license plate on that vehicle! It's completely covered with snow! That's totally irresponsible! He better clean it off before he gets stopped by the police!"

My wife looked me straight in the eyes and said, "It sounds like the pot may be calling the kettle black! It's been snowing! The snow blows up from the road as you drive. Most of the cars have that problem, and I'll bet ours does too!"

"What?" I asked, incredulously. "My license plate isn't dirty! The van was in the garage!"

"You don't know that it's not dirty," she answered. Then she quoted Matt 7:3-4: "Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?"

"Nope," I defended. "Not ours!"

She didn't say anything more about the incident, but when we finally arrived at the restaurant and parked the car, my youngest son was quick to run to the back of the vehicle: "Papa! Look at YOUR license plate! You won't believe this!"

My mouth dropped open in shock. Then my shock turned to shame as I realized that my plate was, if possible, in a worse state than the one we'd seen just 5 minutes earlier! It was buried behind at least 5 cm of icy snow!

"Ouch!" I muttered as I felt that "beam" strike me right in the eye. "How could I have been so blind?"

It's easy to be overly concerned about the welfare of others and to make a fuss about their condition. We always try to justify ourselves by saying, "I'm just concerned, that's all!" In all reality however, what we are doing is pronouncing judgment on others without even lifting a finger to help them out! "But you-who are you to judge your neighbor?" (James 4:12 NIV)

"Look at that snow-covered license plate! We better let the driver know about it and help him out! I sure would appreciate if someone would tell me if something like that was happening to me!"

"Wait! My front licensed plate is covered too! Can you come tell me what to do?"

Rob Chaffart

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