Bad Cover, Bad Book?

Who are we to judge? Do we have the ability to read minds? We can't know before we get to know someone what they'll be like and if they'll hurt us or not.

I've noticed how often I judge people. I get so angry at people who judge me.. then I go behind their back and do the same thing. Before I even meet someone, I automatically start analyzing them. My preconceived notions often cause me to treat the person horribly.

Everyone has issues. Some have trust issues. They come across as people who are cold and hard to get to know. Some are shy and judged as stuck up. We may very well miss out on getting to know the best people. Why not take the chance of being rejected? I have taken the chance to get to know some people I would have never given the time of day before and have become great friends with them.

"Stop judging by mere appearances, and make a right judgment." (John 7:24)

A favorite quote I like to say is, "Hurting people hurt people." Sometimes we judge people when they treat us wrongly. We automatically assume that they're just cold-hearted. Maybe their heart has been hardened, but there's always a reason behind a hardened heart. Show compassion to them. Forgive. Don't judge. Allow God to be their judge.

Who are we to judge? Are we the Creator of the universe? Do we know their thoughts? What they're going through? We have no right to judge someone we do not know. It's hard not to assume when we first meet someone. But we need to give them a chance. Everyone deserves a chance. Just because they come across as a horrible person, doesn't mean they're going to treat you wrong. Maybe it just looks like they're "mean" or "inconsiderate". Maybe they actually have a sweet, kind spirit but no one has taken the chance to find out.

"There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you-- who are you to judge your neighbor?" (James 4:12)

"Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." (Matthew 7:1-2) A lot of people don't quite understand this verse in its full meaning. When you judge someone a certain way, you are going to reap the same action. It's the law of Sowing and Reaping. If you judge someone for having a bad attitude, you will reap a bad attitude.

"When they kept on questioning Him, He straightened up and said to them, 'If any of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.'" (John 8:7) Are you perfect? All of us make mistakes. It's our human nature. Therefore, none of us have a right to judge someone.

"Do to others as you would have them do to you." (Luke 6:31) Do you want people to think well of you? You don't want people judging you, do you? Thinking is an action, just as "do" is. When we think a thought, we can choose to have an action to go with it. If you think someone isn't worth getting to know, you may choose not to get to know them. Stop your thoughts in their tracks. You wouldn't want anyone thinking wrongly of you.

Sometimes people look odd. We automatically assume they're odd people. Looks don't equal personality. Beauty is only skin deep. We can't know before we get to know someone if they're going to be odd or not. Allow yourself to figure it out. Give them the chance to be real with you, to show who they really are. You won't regret it.

I challenge you to look for someone you wouldn't normally hang out with. Get to know them. Share God's love with them. You may be the first person to share Jesus with them.

Dear Jesus,
Who am I to judge? I'm not perfect. I'm sorry for being a hypocrite, yes...a hypocrite. I judge Your children while I, myself, continue to live in sin. These are Your children. They're Your creation. When I judge how they look, I'm ridiculing Your creation! When I judge how they act, I'm failing to see them with love as You do. I'm sorry. Give me Your eyes. Help me to see people as You do.

In Jesus' Name,

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