Thursday, August 4, 2016

Snap Judgments are Natural

But the Lord said to Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.
1 Samuel 16:7 (NLT)

I can’t help myself.

I make judgments based on appearance.

Are you with me?

It’s natural. If a girl with curly red hair bullied you in 2nd grade, your brain associates curly red hair with meanness. Having a dishonest co-worker of a particular ethnicity trains your brain to distrust others of the same background.

We make positive associations too. Southern accents may elicit warm feelings because a Georgian friend showed great kindness.
We can’t stop our brain’s natural tendency, so we need God’s help. The challenge is to resist the urge to make assumptions and remember that everyone is created in God’s image. Everyone has innate goodness and beauty whether they wear a suit or a prison stripes, run a non-profit or collect garbage, serve lunch at the shelter or cheat on their taxes.

In this scripture, Samuel had instructed Jesse to line up his sons so one could be anointed the next king of Israel. Jesse doesn’t bring David in from the fields for the lineup. He discounts David because shepherding was lowly work and the youngest child had little standing.

But this young, lowly shepherd was God’s chosen one. God saw David’s heart.

Seeing people the way God sees them takes time. (tweet this)

It takes retraining our brains to see the good in everyone. It takes looking beyond differences, circumstances and even ugly attitudes. It takes relationship.

Who do you overlook? How could you affirm their value?

#SeedsOfScripture #judgmental #ChildofGod


  1. Cathy, Great post. I have learned a lot from kids. They are witty and honest. If I want to know the truth about a situation, I ask a kid. When I was young I would hear, "Kids are to be seen not heard." I observed my friend say this to her child. I lovingly told her that God would not want us to talk to our kids that way. She apologized to her son. Kids have a lot to say and it is worth listening to.

  2. So easy to do! The Lord is showing me I need to be careful when I do so. People are not always what they seem on the outside.