Here are four ways to avoid becoming a judgmental person. What ways would you suggest?
Don’t Judge by Sight
It is far too easy to look at someone and make a quick judgment, and very rarely is that quick assessment or judgment true. We must remember what God told Samuel: “For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart” (1 Sam. 16:7). Looks can be deceiving. You cannot judge a book until you read it, and not by the front cover. I know I’ve been guilty of this. I repented of that and now reserve judgment when I look at people and trust in God.
Accept the Differences
I witnessed to a co-worker many years ago, but I hesitated to do so because he was a biker and had tattoos all over his body. I managed to work up the courage and did it anyway because I assumed he wasn’t saved by the way he looked. I couldn’t have been more wrong. When I went up to him and shared the Gospel, he said that he was saved years ago. I confessed my judging him by sight, and he told me, “Well, at least you had the courage to tell me about Christ.” I never forgot that, and today I don’t care what a person looks like because I can’t see their heart. But God can, and that’s all that truly matters. I accept people no matter what they look like: tattoos, body piercings, and whatever else you can think of.
See Them as God Sees Them
If we want to be more like God, we must learn to look at people the way He looks at them. The difference is that God knows the heart and we don’t, so we can’t make assumptions about someone. We must learn to see them as God sees them. Think about this: Before we came to place our trust in Christ, we were wicked sinners and natural enemies of God (Rom. 5:8, 10) and separated from his holiness by our sins (Isaiah 59:1-2). But “while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8). “For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly” (Rom. 5:6), of which I include myself first and foremost.
Look at Yourself
If we are to judge anyone, let it start with the person in the mirror. We know that our own hearts are wicked, and my own “heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it” (Jer. 17:9). I must first take the plank that’s in my own eye before I ever try to look at the speck in my brother’s or sister’s eye (Matt. 7:5). Let judgment start with me!
I pray these ways of being too judgmental will help you not repeat the same mistakes that I have. I judged–really misjudged–by sight. I didn’t accept the differences in people. I didn’t see them as God sees them. Finally, I needed to look at my own life first before I could ever be qualified to look at the lives of others.
May God richly bless you,
Pastor Jack Wellman
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