One of the common pitfalls we often encounter as humans is misjudging others. This misjudgment typically stems from different perspectives, such as sight, words, experience, comparison, and assumptions. As believers, we are encouraged to navigate through these perspectives with wisdom, kindness, and understanding.
Firstly, we must not solely rely on sight. Recall the biblical account of Samuel the Prophet when choosing Israel’s next king. Despite Jesse presenting his “big boys” as the ideal candidates, God selected the seemingly least likely choice, David. This teaches us a valuable lesson found in 1 Samuel 16:7 – “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”
Secondly, we should be careful not to judge others by their words. We are all different, growing at varying rates, much like a farmer’s field where cornstalks of different heights will yield a harvest when the time is right. It is crucial to respect the pace at which God grows each of us in holiness and remembers we haven’t walked in their shoes.
Thirdly, our judgments should not be dictated by personal experiences. We must remember that each person’s life is unique, just as our experiences are. Rather than condemning individuals who have faced legal troubles or homelessness, we are called to demonstrate Christ-like love and compassion.
The Apostle Paul offers another valuable insight, reminding us not to compare ourselves with others or set ourselves as the standard. As stated in 2 Corinthians 10:12, “When they measure themselves by one another and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding.” The standard we ought to follow is Jesus Christ’s example.
Lastly, it’s crucial to avoid assumptions. This approach aligns with Paul’s description of love in 1 Corinthians 13:7, as love “bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” By not assuming the worst, we uphold the tenets of love – bearing with others, believing in them, hoping for the best, and enduring challenges.
As followers of Christ, it’s our calling to treat everyone with respect and love, irrespective of their appearance or past. We are reminded of this in the welcoming nature of our churches, which accept everyone, not minding their attire, tattoos, or hairstyles, as long as they respect the rules against nudity and drugs. After all, at the foot of the cross, the ground is level, emphasizing that we are all equal in God’s eyes.
In conclusion, God would indeed be pleased if we accept others just as they are, mirroring how He accepted us when we were still enemies of God (Romans 5:10). It’s our responsibility to strive against the tendency to misjudge, leading with love, understanding, and respect in all our interactions.