Leroy Brownlow tells the story of a baker in a little country town who made amazing pastries. Every Monday morning the baker would purchase his butter from a nearby farmer in one pound bricks. One morning the baker returned to his shop with his bricks of butter and suspected that his bricks were not actually full 1lb. bricks. For several days the baker weighed his bricks of butter to test their weight. After a week of weighing his bricks he discovered that his hunch was right. The butter bricks were short weight, and the baker had the farmer arrested for his false dealings.
At the farmer’s trial the judge asked the dishonest farmer, “You do weigh your bricks of butter on a scale do you not?” “No your honor,” was the reply. Surprised by the farmer’s answer, the judge followed up with another question, “Then how do you manage to weigh the butter you sell?” The farmer replied, “That is easily explained, your honor. I have a balance. As a weight for my balance I use a one pound loaf of bread I buy from the baker.”
The dishonest baker serves as an example of the very thing Jesus warned us about in Matthew 7:1-2: “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measure to you.” We expect a lot out of others. We expect people to do what’s right. To work hard. To do their job. To be on time. To help us out when they can. We expect their bricks of butter to weigh a full 16oz. But what do we expect out of ourselves? Are we willing to do as much as we expect out of others?
Let’s make sure that our measure of a pound is a full pound before we start accusing others of selling us a little short.