“What’s America’s pastime?”
You might be tempted to answer “Baseball.” I’m going to go out on a limb here and say “judgment.”
Every morning, I grab some coffee and the newspaper. Let the games begin.
I read about judicial trials, Good Samaritans and sports figures behaving badly. And I develop an opinion about all of it.
Opinions are fine, we all have reactions and ideas about the world. The trouble comes when I decide a person’s character based on the single event I see.
Now that’s a problem.
Do you know how to pick a good pineapple? I don’t. I love to eat them, but how to figure out which one is good or bad? It’s a mystery to me. I look carefully over the crackly, spiny skin. But I’ll never know for sure what’s going on inside. Is it ripe? Good to eat?
It’s the same process with forming an opinion about someone. At first meeting, I don’t have any idea what that person is like. But, just like the pineapple, I might be tempted to look at the outside and make a judgment.
I’m sure that many people have made assumptions about me. All based on my ‘outside;’ my face, my clothes; that’s about it. I’m sure that anyone looking at my jeans and tee shirt couldn’t begin to guess my personality or spirit. Yet, it happens all the time.
Not taking the time to listen and understand, I might be dismissed. Or I might dismiss you.
Case in Point
I am very reliable behind the wheel. I don’t excessively speed, I don’t drink and drive and I know where I am going.
But if I am out of town, or out of state, getting around can be a challenge. Sometimes I am reduced to fumbling my way over to the correct lane position, or slowing down to exit on that ramp I ALMOST MISSED! Phew!
If you were driving in the car behind me, what would you be thinking? (Can you say it out loud?)
Plenty of people on that road would love to tell me what kind of person I am. Spacey, distracted, dangerous. But that’s not me.
I have been robbed of my rich identity by one event in my day.
Love in Action
Judgment creates strain. It breaks people apart. The wedges that result cause fractures in the Body of Christ. We were designed to be a seamless garment, and should be intertwined together. We were made to support each other in the Lord.
The remedy? I need to slow down and think about the judgments I make. My goal is to be Christ to each person I meet.
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. Ephesians 4:29
Wouldn’t it be great if America’s pastime was ‘Love of Neighbor’?
That would be creating heaven on earth. And isn’t that what the Lord calls each of us to do?
Won’t you join me by ‘liking’ my Facebook Page?