Blinded by the Outside
My brothers and sisters, believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ must not show favoritism. Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in filthy old clothes also comes in. If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, “Here’s a good seat for you,” but say to the poor man, “You stand there” or “Sit on the floor by my feet,” have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? James 2: 1-4
We are tempted every day to make judgments about people and situations from the outside, but we don’t know what is going on in the heart. I spend a lot of time in a slum community near my home. From the outside, Masese could be seen as dirty and disease-ridden, and the people who live there are often viewed as hostile and unfriendly to outsiders. As you come into the village, you’re met with a strong, pungent smell of trash, urine and disease. Half-naked children sit outside filthy, run-down mud shacks, and adults often glare with suspicion at new people: “Why is she here?” Yes, on the outside Masese is not the most appealing place to visit.
But on the inside, we are each the same. We all have a desire to be loved and to be known. We all were made in God’s image for the purpose of bringing Him glory. Some of my friends in Masese are rich in love, forgiveness, and generosity. If I never would have visited Masese, I never would have learned this. We have a choice to look at what is on the outside, or to look at the heart as He does. To see the world as He sees it, ask Him to help you break free of some of the prejudices you may have. Confess the ways you have been blinded by what is on the outside.
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