Monday, February 07, 2005

How do we view others?

I read someone's blog recently and they were talking about how people judge others by their looks, esp. the young people. I can certainly understand why some people might be judged because of others that have gone before them and spoiled things, but not everyone is the same. Not every group of young people is the same nor is every group of 'old' people. I have to admit that people do tend to look at a group of young people who are dressed differently and judge them wrongly. Often without reason....but I have to say there are many reason's why they are judged. Unfortunately all it takes is a small minority to dress differently, in ways we don't think are proper or understand or like, and have a group of these kids causing trouble, and doing things that are wrong. Immediately when we see someone else dressed in the same way or the same age, we begin to stereotype that age group. It may not be right, but it happens, and I can see why some people do this, but it doesn't make it right. All it takes is a small group of trouble makers to spoil it for others who fit their stereotypes. Does it stop here? NO... Unfortunately many people out there tend to put all people into categories, & groups & stereotype them into the way they see them, and view things. Age is not a barrier in this area, nor is the way you dress. There are so many things that people are critical of: Oh she doesn't dress up or she wears the wrong clothes, he has tatoo's or too many piercings, his clothes don't fit the standards... This barrier goes even further to the point where you are criticized because of your colour, your lifestyle or lack of it, your size, the fact that you wear glasses, or that you don't fit into a certain group.
The old saying you can't judge a book by it's cover is so true!! We are the books...and are covers should not matter or affect who we really are...even though they sometimes do.
Kids are often the most critical of all in that they make fun of one another, and call each other names. "Fatty, four eyes, beanpole, stinky, teacher's pet"....are just a few of the names I remember hearing in school. Back then the teachers really didn't put a stop to those things, or like always, didn't hear most of it anyway. Kids were cruel in their name calling. If you didn't fit into a certain group, or you were too shy, or daring to do the things they thought you should do you were shunned, and made fun of. Those names hurt, and even more it hurts to be made fun of & cut down and ignored, and not included in what others are doing. Why do children do this to those around them? Is it something they've learned from one another or from their peers or parents?
Some youth are great for ganging up on someone who doesn't quite fit into their way of how they think they should look or act. They look at older people & parents as someone from the dark ages, and think they are too old to understand what they are dealing with and going thro'. We all experienced different things...and I know I have not, nor will I ever forget my childhood or teenage years...nor would I ever want to relive or go back to many of those times because of the things I experienced at the fun of others.
Unfortunately being critical is not just limited to the kids, or the youth, nor is it limited to any age, sex, colour, group or area. People from every walk of life are out there being critical of one another, and putting others into the categories they feel each should be in and stereotyping all those around them.
So many people are made fun of and judged because of their colour, their size, their religion, their way of life, their age, their forms of dress & appearance, where they live, what their parents do, how the teacher treats them, the kind of marks they get in school, how socialized they are..............and the list goes on.
This is a problem that has been around since the beginning of time, and during the time that Jesus walked the earth He too was judged, stereotyped and criticized. More than that, He was beaten, made fun of and nailed to a cross where He gave His life in His love for mankind and His Father. Can you imagine the utter despair & pain that He must have gone thro'?
Christ died on that cross for us because of His great love for us. He asks that we love one another as He loved us. That is the greatest gift God provides for us and asks of love one another. If we love someone we will accept them as they are. If we accept Christ into our lives, and His love, He will bless us with His Holy Spirit and with the gift of His Spirit. From there we will be blessed and know the fruits of the spirit where we should live & walk in love. Galations 5 talks about walking in the Spirit and the gifts & fruit of the Spirit which God supplies. If we accept others for who & what they are then we are following what God asks of us.
"The fruit of the Spirit is the direct result of the life of Christ ministered to the believer by the Spirit."Donald Gee
Can we look around us and try to see deep within others and perhaps try to see what Christ sees? Can we honestly say we don't judge others by their appearances, or the way they act & dress, who they hang out with, or how old they are...or any of those many other factors. What do we see when we look at someone new? Do we try to get to know them and to understand them or do we stereotype them upon our first view?
Perhaps we need to look deep within ourselves and see what God is seeing and before we seek to judge, find acceptance & reach out in love...and then we might see others doing the same.

1 comment:

The Reverend said...

Beautifully said!!