People are so judgmental of others, and unfortunately I have to include myself in that category.
Reference: v.36 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbour to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?” (NIV Bible)
Explore: The other day I was out the front of my house when two gentlemen walked past. I am not sure of their exact nationality but they were wearing their traditional clothing with turbans. While I do live in a fairly multi-cultural part of Melbourne, usually guys in my neighbourhood just wear jeans and a t-shirt. While this traditional dress was not foreign to me, it was a little out of the norm. As the gentlemen came closer I made a concerted effort to be polite to them. I smiled and asked them how they were going and we had a brief conversation about the weather as they walked past. After our brief encounter I was rather pleased with myself. I felt quite righteous that I had not allowed myself to be prejudice against someone who looked different to me. However, a secondary thought sent me reeling. The fact that I had to tell myself to be polite to these gentlemen revealed in me that I do actually have some deeply embedded fear against people who look different to me. I should not have felt righteous for being polite but should have been disappointed in myself that I thought that being polite was an option.
Application: People are so judgmental of others, and unfortunately I have to include myself in that category. As we get older we think that being wiser is just being more sceptical of other people. We see things on the news and in the media and think that could happen to us and so we block ourselves from anyone and anything we do not recognise. And yet, when Jesus tells the all-familiar story of the Good Samaritan we are reminded that we must look beyond ourselves and do our best to reach out and help other people. We must not look at the outward appearance but be more like God and look at people’s hearts.
Prayer: Lord, forgive me when I judge people for their outward appearance. May you give me the insight to see people for who You have created them to be. Amen.
Who have you misjudged from a first impression? Who do you need to give a second chance to?
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This article was written by Linda Bailey
Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.