Snap Judgments

by Justin Morton

Have you ever drawn the wrong conclusions about someone simply based on your first impression of that person? We may have drawn some unfair conclusions based on a limited experience with that individual.

Do you remember the story of Hannah? While she was at the temple praying, Eli watched her from a distance (I Samuel 1:12). Hannah was praying to the Lord for a son. What was odd to Eli was that this woman’s mouth was moving but he didn’t hear any words. That’s when Eli misjudged Hannah. Thinking she was drunk, Eli told her to put her wine away (I Samuel 1:13-14). Hannah had to explain to Eli that she was not drunk; she was pouring her heart out to the Lord in prayer (I Samuel 1:15-16). Eli drew a conclusion about Hannah that was false.

While we would like to think Eli is the only person to ever do such a thing, that’s simply not the case. Sometimes we are just as guilty of making assumptions about people that are not true. Maybe it happens with someone we work with, someone we go to school with or someone we see around town. Sadly, sometimes it even happens within the walls of the church building where we attend. People occasionally come and might be dressed or act a little differently compared to everyone else. When that happens, are we quick to draw conclusions?

Eli made a judgment about Hannah that proved to be inaccurate. Are we guilty of making judgments about people based only on what we are able to see on the outside? Let’s heed the words of Jesus and not judge according to appearances (John 7:24). The person we are making snap judgments about might be going through something we know nothing about. Instead, let’s spend time with these individuals and get to know their true character.