Have you ever judged someone based on their appearance, perhaps deciding that the individual was of poor character, because they wore something that you wouldn’t or something that made you uncomfortable?
‘Show of hands’ if you’ve been there—I have.
I’ve found myself face down in those ‘judgy’ shoes on various occasions (size eight please ma’am, thank you).
Of course, I am aware that those preconceived ideas we form in our heads aren’t always the best. Still, “old habits die hard” and let’s not forget that we live in the 21st century.
I’m not going to act like this century hasn’t caused me to be wary. I’d like to think that in some instances, I used wisdom and judged correctly. In other cases, my paranoia, perhaps, got the best of me.
Sometime ago, I met someone new. I had heard rumours (bad ones), and this instantly caused me to put my guard up.
I ran into the individual many times after our first encounter. In fact, the run-ins could not be avoided. After sometime, I started wondering whether I was hasty with my condemnation. Perhaps I was prejudging; perhaps my friend was wrong. She had a knack for exaggeration after all.
I decided to get to know the individual rather than going with the popular choice. I must admit, I have a ‘soft heart’ and a perpetual desire to do what’s right (which I absolutely hate at times).
I realized that sometimes, however, individuals tend to push others away without giving them a chance. We grade others without even giving them a chance to write the exam!
The individual, I discovered, was one who was trying to turn over a new leaf. One who made a great mistake years ago, acknowledged it, and was working towards being a better person.
I felt awful. Here I was judging away, without even a second thought, and I did not know the backstory.
I found myself praying for the individual who would easily be judged because of the outward appearance and (for those who knew), past mistakes.
It’s easy to prejudge someone, because sadly, sometimes what you see is what you get, hence, building a stereotype in some cases.
Sometimes, however, those we judge surpass our expectations, leaving us with serious food for thought.
I would not dare say that we should let our guards down completely, rather, simply use wisdom in all situations.
Take care my loves.