Don’t Label People
But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”1 Samuel 16:7
We tend to make quick judgments and place labels on people based on appearances or other characteristics. It’s virtually impossible not to make judgments about people until they reveal their character to us, but like God we are to look at the heart. To look at a person’s heart takes time, good listening skills, and an attitude that looks for the best in the person.
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, (Philippians 2:3). This is the attitude of a Christian with a heart filled with God’s agape love. If we approach everyone with a heart of love, then we will look for an opening to bring out the best in that person. Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing (1 Thessalonians 5:11). Approach others with a humble and secure and encouraging heart.
It’s easy to compare ourselves to others. We may see others above us or we may see others below us, but we should always respect others because of our security in Christ. A Christian is humble and secure and always seeks to encourage others, aiming to bring out the best in them.
For if a man comes into your assembly with a gold ring and dressed in fine clothes, and there also comes in a poor man in dirty clothes, and you pay special attention to the one who is wearing the fine clothes, and say, “You sit here in a good place,” and you say to the poor man, “You stand over there, or sit down by my footstool,” have you not made distinctions among yourselves, and become judges with evil motives? (James 2:2-4). Here a judgment is being made strictly on appearance with no thought to the character revealed by their heart. Both men should be treated equally with a compassionate loving heart.
Today make an effort not to judge people without getting to know them. Seek to know others if they are willing to talk. Reflect Christ with gentleness in words, revealing a caring heart.
Lord help me not to label others, but to always try to bring the best out in them. In Jesus name, Amen