It happens all the time, I pull into a bus stop and before I even open the door, the person at the bus stop looks at me and then proceeds to turn and speak to the person behind them. What they just did, is size me up! That person has determined who I was and what I am about from just that one glance.
Let’s face it we all make automatic judgments on a person the moment we see them, determining by their looks whether they are a good person or what kind of behavior they might display.
This reminds me of a song from the 70’s called “Signs,” in the song the person sees a sign at an establishment which said, “Long haired freaky people need not apply.” The singer goes on to say that he put his hair under his hat and went in to ask why. The owner of the establishment said, he looked fine to him and the man took off his hat and surprised the owner with his long hair. This shop owner was guilty of sizing up all people with long hair, labeling them as freaks.
In the Bible, Samuel the prophet is found guilty of sizing up the sons of Jesse. In 1 Samuel 16:1-13, God asks Samuel to go to Jesse because he would make one of his sons the next king of Israel. As the sons of Jesse passed before him he first looked at the eldest and said “Surely the Lord’s anointed is before Him.” But the Lord said to Samuel, “ Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
Samuel looked at all the sons present, but the Lord had rejected them all. He then asked Jesse if these were all the children, Jesse said, “There remains the youngest, he is tending sheep.” David, the future king of Israel was not even invited into Samuel’s presence and what is sad is his own father sized him up thinking there’s no way Samuel would anoint him!
We all know David turned out to be Israel’s greatest king, but if it was up to man and what they thought, David would have never been appointed.
In our society we tend to see the beautiful people as the ones with the most to give, but in reality using Gods standard of measure, we should use the persons character as a clue as to what type of person they are.
The only way to do this is to take the time to get to know the person. Even though Jesse was David’s father it seems like he did not know his son very well nor have an understanding of what God is looking for in leaders.
The next time you see a person for the first time try and not size them up, but wait until you hear what they say before you make a judgment on their character. Who knows you might meet a great person that you would otherwise dismiss judging only by their looks.
Father, help us not to judge people but to get to know them first before we form an opinion. In the name of Jesus I pray, amen