A Lesson I Won’t Soon Forget


I often think I’ve got this “do not judge others” thing down.

Ever think that?

I even have this rule about believing the best of people despite their behavior. I’ve written about that here. But basically, it’s a practice based on two verses…

The second greatest commandment… “love your neighbor as yourself” (Matt. 22:39 NIV)

And, “… (love) believes the best in all things …”(1 Cor. 13:7b ISV)

So, the commandment to love and love being defined to believe the best for me equates to a non-judgmental approach to people. I’ve found that this little biblical combo saves me from a lot of trouble.

Most of the time.

Recently we visited a little specialty food shop in the next town over. As we pull into the parking lot we witness a man walking across the lot with a mayonnaise jar filled with yellow liquid.

We immediately turn up our noses assuming its contents to be bodily waste.

We’ve all heard the stories of the truck drivers leaving these little jars on the highway road side.

We assume he is one of these.

We see him go into the bushes next to the shop and pour it out.

As we get out of our truck to go in, he walks back in our direction, empty jar in hand. He spots my Nevada t-shirt and our plates and attempts to strike up a conversation with us about being a long way from home.

We answer quickly and usher our way toward the store entrance. We avoid him.

Oh, my friends, it pains me deeply to even type the next part. But…

As we enter the store we turn back to see him get in the back of a Van… not a semi-truck. My husband notices in the front seat of the van a paraplegic or possibly quadriplegic young man.

Yeah…. hurts even to read it doesn’t it?

So, it won’t surprise you that the topic of judgment is in the pit of my stomach.

Judgment is so often a quick response based on what we see with our fleshly eyes.

We tend to make sub-conscious decisions with little or no thought. I’m reminded that it takes much more than that to rightly judge a person or situation. I must look at people thoughtfully and prayerfully.

Because we never know the whole story.  

And, who knows what opportunity God had for us with this man and that boy in the van. Maybe none, but I’m ashamed and disappointed to say that I do not know for sure.

However, I am grateful for a God who cares enough to remind me, painful as it is, that I do not have this “do not judge others” thing down.

A lesson I won’t soon forget.

Father, thank you for difficult reminders to see your people the way you do. May we never forget that we rarely know the story behind what we see with our fleshly eyes. Give us great wisdom and discernment to judge appropriately. Forgive us when we judge wrongly and continue to teach us to love and believe the best of others. In Jesus Name, Amen

“And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ”

Philippians 1:9-10

 Linking up with Eileen at The Scenic Route for…


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7 Responses


Heidi, this is the second time in the past week or so that I have heard this kind of thing. As Christians we say we don’t judge, but we do. May God help me to not judge but show love. Great post!!
Jenifer recently posted..Family Walks And Lessons LearnedMy Profile

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Heidi, this is powerful post. I think we’ve all been there…where we too easily judge. Thank for sharing this.
Eileen recently posted..Are You Ready To Get Wrecked?My Profile

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This is what my pastor said to us many years ago and I have always tucked it in my mind. When the moment comes and we think we got it down that is a sure sign you haven’t for you have only deceived yourself into thinking you have.

Let me give you a personal example. When I was a child I hated to wait I had no patience with people or anything, my patience was very short. My mother told me all the time she said Desi God is going to deal with you in that area you watch and see, of course I just thought she was trying to change me so I did not listen. Well needless to say mom was right. every time I go any where and stand in line I had to wait and if I waited five minutes I would ask for a store manager and make him open up a line so I can get out of here. Now that was just so wrong but I did it. Than one day the Lord said you are going to learn patience and how you are going to learn is every time you enter a store when the lines are long you are not going to say one word but wait patiently. Oh how I did not like this. But I had to do it. Than after so many years I was like yeah I got it down I am patient and girl the moment I said that something came up and my patience went right out the door. So it goes to show the moment we think we arrived we haven’t for all we need is life to present itself a situation and than the real us comes out..Sorry for making this too long but I wanted to share my story with you and your readers to let us all know we still have a long way to go..AMEN
Desiray recently posted..The People ComplainMy Profile

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It stings, doesn’t it? {{{hugs}}} I think some lessons take a whole lifetime to learn. We’re faced with these situations daily (I shared about my recent “lesson learned” last week on Facebook). Thank the Lord for His grace and forgiveness.
Great post!
Debbie Dillon recently posted..Quick Thought of the day: Personal SpaceMy Profile

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This was wonderfully written. We all struggle with being quick to judge sometimes. God allows us to be in situations where we grow even more; thankfully, we are watered with grace. Asking Him to help us see like He sees…
BelovedBomber recently posted..Finding and Eliminating the MonsterMy Profile

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Rushing to judgement, boy who hasn’t done that! What an eye opening experience! Don’t be hard in yourself though girl;)) It’s such a great reminder of how God sees us… He looks at the heart while man looks at outward appearances. That’s why Christ came… Because he knew we could never do this in our own! Love you:)))

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Yes, we never know the whole story… Thanks for this reminder!

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