Snap Judgments


Have you been hurt by someone making a snap judgment about you? Remember the hurtful feeling so you won’t be so quick to hurt someone else.

You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister? Or why do you treat your brother or sister with contempt? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. Romans 14:10, TNIV

Recently, I was on the receiving end of a snap judgment. A woman sent a hurtful e-mail accusing me of something I didn’t do. It made me feel like she’d beat me with a baseball bat, especially because I was innocent and she had no right to say such things to me. It took three pots of tea and the advice of a good friend for me to respond graciously to her.

We all know it’s wrong to make snap judgments about people or to condemn them without getting the full story. We know it’s not what Jesus would want us to do. We know that when we do it, it could be that we’re being ignorant of the story behind the person’s actions. The other person may have a really good motivation for being a certain way or doing certain things.

Granted, sometimes we make a snap judgment and we’re right, but how often does that happen? And the times we’re wrong usually cause more damage than it’s worth, so we know we shouldn’t make snap judgments. We should give people the benefit of the doubt, and we should be patient and considerate to others, giving them a chance to explain themselves.

We know all this in our heads, but we still make snap judgments anyway. It’s almost automatic.

I’m hoping this experience will make me rethink the next time I might make a snap judgment against someone else. I want to remember how hurt I felt so that I’ll hesitate before doing something that might make someone else feel the way I did.

FAITH STEP: Have you been hurt by someone else making a snap judgment about you? Remember that hurtful feeling so that you won’t be so quick to hurt someone else. Have you made a snap judgment against someone? Go to them and apologize, or just talk to them to understand their side of the story. React the way Jesus would want you to react.

Contributed by Camy Tang


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