Spiritual Eye Check-Up

Article by: Bridgehaven Team

Counselors Reflect on Dangerous Calling by Paul Tripp
A Series to Care for the Care Takers of God’s People


“Sin plays havoc with our spiritual vision. Although we are able to see the sin of others with specificity and clarity, we tend to be blind to our own. And the most dangerous aspect of this already dangerous condition is that spiritually blind people tend to be blind in their blindness.”   Paul David Tripp in Dangerous Calling, Page 34

Growing up, my Dad did a lot of carpentry work. He had a shop behind our house that smelled of sawdust and contained many on-going wood projects. As a little girl, when I used to enter that shop, I was amazed at the thousands of specks of sawdust on the floor that would come from a large piece of wood. Maybe that is why Jesus’ analogy in Matthew 7 is so striking to me today. Jesus asks, “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” (Matt. 7:3)? It seems so easy to point out others’ shortcomings like anger, gossip, pride, or a critical spirit and not see the “plank” of sin in my own life. If we would stop in the midst of pointing out another’s sin and ask, “Do I struggle with that?” More than likely, the answer would be “Yes.” Scripture is clear that all sin and fall short of God’s glory (Rom. 3:23). Because our hearts are deceitful (Jer. 17:9), we can be great “self-swindler,” tricking ourselves into thinking that we are better than we are. The sin that we are so quick to point out in others is probably a very present struggle in our own lives.


Jesus does not tell us to ignore someone else’s sin: “How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye” (Matt. 7:4-5). What he does say, though, is to look to your [my] own heart first, repenting and confessing of sin before looking to confront someone else’s sin. Anytime I go to confront sin in someone else’s life, I must look at my own. If I cannot see my sin, then I should seek out a trusted brother or sister in Christ and ask.


Someone that is blind needs assistance. Likewise, as believers, we need help seeing the sin that we cannot see. Pastor, counselor, ministry worker, do you have someone in your life that can lovingly confront sin in your life? Sin blinds us. We need someone to point us back to the light of Christ. Tripp notes that the body of Christ acts as an “instrument of seeing in our lives” (p. 34). Others bring depth and insight into our lives that we cannot see because of the “planks” that are in our eyes. It may be time for a spiritual eye check-up. There may be a plank that needs to be removed.



535826: Dangerous Calling: Confronting the Unique Challenges of Pastoral Ministry Dangerous Calling: Confronting the Unique Challenges of Pastoral Ministry By Paul David Tripp / Crossway Books & Bibles