There are two specific instances where God revealed to me how wrong my judgements are. I, like many others, believed a lie that Pitbulls were vicious, aggressive, and not to be trusted. A few years ago, I found myself in the middle of a debate on Facebook arguing that they should be banned nationally. At the time it was hot in the news due to recent attacks.
Fast forward to 2016, I received a call from my niece. She explained to me that a dog kept showing up at her work every day for about a month and appeared to be abandoned. The next day I went over to check him out and as fate would have it, he was an American Pit bull terrier.
I took him home and have had him since for nearly two years. He now visits our patients in addiction treatment. To my surprise, he is one of the most loving and gentle dogs I have ever encountered. He puts smiles on our patients faces and knows who is truly hurting emotionally. He provides them with kisses, love, and affection.
This next experience has also been a real eye opener as it relates to judging. The situation has to do with Pastor Rick Warren, the author of the very popular book “Purpose Driven Life.” After reading various posts on social media that were less than flattering I began to judge him. Now with any public figure there will always be negative articles so it can be difficult to sift through the real and fake news. A year later, I attended a faith conference in Nashville and one of the speakers was Rick Warren. He shared a message that had to do with losing his son to suicide, which was one of the most powerful stories I have ever heard. Much like the loved ones of patients in addiction treatment, I had judged this man without knowing what he had gone through. He became overwhelmed with emotion in the middle of his presentation, which prompted Michael W. Smith to begin to play the song “Worthy is the Lamb” as Rick could no longer speak. During this time I felt the most incredible conviction for judging this man I have ever experienced in my life. I began to ask God to forgive me for judging him and committed to never judge someone again. Often times we judge someone based on information that is inaccurate and we later feel a sense of guilt or shame as I experienced in the two cases references.
We can save ourselves from going through this unpleasant experience if and when we decide to “Stop Judging!”