Someone came up to me today and said (in broken English), “You don’t look like four children! You look too young for that!” (Obviously, she meant to say that I don’t look like I have four children.) I just smiled and said, “thank you”. I get that a lot when I am out in public by myself. When meeting someone for the first time, I find that I am looked at quite differently, depending on whether I am alone or with my children. When I am alone and I meet someone, that person usually uses the word “señorita” (meaning young, unmarried woman) throughout our conversation. It is kind of fun to play along, actually, because I just wait for the opportune time (usually when s/he gets to the question of asking if I have any children), and then I wait for the shocked expression when I reply that I have four. On the other hand, when I meet someone when my children are with me, the person will automatically use “señora” (the title for wife and/or mother) without hesitation.
It is amazing how we sometimes, by appearances, begin to assume things about others. Appearances can be deceiving sometimes, can’t they? Someone might look confident, but in reality, she is struggling with low self-esteem. A woman may seem calm, cool, and collected, yet inside she is dealing with something deep and soul-wrenching. Another may seem cold and arrogant, however it may be that she struggles with shyness.
As we see and meet new people, whether in the workplace, neighborhood, or church, may each of us be reminded to not assume things about others. May we take the time to get to know someone and become a trusted friend.
John 8:15 (NIV) You judge by human standards; I pass judgment on no one.
Your turn to share: Have you recently made a wrong assumption about someone?