I write this as I look at myself, through my own lens. Some who know me may say “Oh yes, you are that…judgmental.” And sadly I will agree with you. Recently the little voice inside told me I was doing that a lot, not as much verbally, but a lot mentally. So I asked God to please forgive me all the times I have judged someone or a situation, and to help me stop.
I think about when the time comes and I stand before God, how will He judge me! Thankfully I know He forgives me, and that brings me to Forgiveness. It is so important that I continue to forgive others whether they actually hurt me, or the hurt is only imagined.
So, I have been practicing to stop the judgemental thinking at the start and I want to share the joys of becoming open minded.
One day while sitting in Barnes and Noble (BN Café) enjoying reading with a cup of coffee a man came struggling through between the tables. He was a big man, heavyset, gray hair, goatee, about 5’ 4” and maybe in his 60’s. He was very shaky and unsteady even though using a cane. He was very frustrated, even a bit angry as he mumbled “this is a death trap.” He repeated same to a young man (maybe his son) who came a couple minutes later to get him. Of course, my immediate mental reaction was that he was a grumpy old man!
I watched as the young man patiently helped him up and held the man’s hand as he struggled again to walk through the tables and chairs, then out of the store to their car which was right in front of the floor to ceiling wall of glass which allowed me to continue watching. It took the man quite awhile to get himself into the car and I could see the pain and frustration on his face. Suddenly my heart softened and I realized his difficulty was more the cause of his frustration and anger as it reduced his inability to be fully independent.
Another day at BN Café, yes I come here a lot as my external office and people watching. I love to sit at a table where lots of light comes in and do my reading and writing. Anyway, as I sat peacefully doing my thing, a young man…well young compared to me these days (ha ha ha)…came in with his five children around the ages of 8 to 13 (my estimate). He pulled together a few of the small tables and chairs. As the children got settled in, Dad went to get two large Frappuccinos which they all shared.
Yes, the minute they came in and began sitting down I thought “Oh no, what kind of noise are they going to create to disturb my peace!” Before you judge me, let me say that I love kids, unless they are undisciplined brats. Actually it is not those children I don’t like, but the parents who allow them to be that way. I used to child sit for a family of five of the greatest kids who I just adore…three girls and two boys.
Again I caught myself and just watched. They each took out a tablet, and the dad did the same. I thought he was going to do some home schooling. The children were quiet, soft spoken and well-mannered. Each of them were busy doing something on their own pads and would show each other what they had done. Turns out they were drawing pictures, and the Dad is actually a sketch artist along with his own marketing business. They were a smiling, happy, peaceful and loving family…three girls and two boys. Every once in awhile one of the younger girls with blond hair who was seated where she could see me would look over at me and smile. Just watching this family warmed my heart, filled me with joy, and actually made my heart smile. Of course I smiled back. I finally got up and asked the dad if I could take a picture of them, explaining what a joy it was for me to watch them. He gave me his permission, and I emailed him the two photos I took. Just watching them filled me with a peace and joy I can’t explain, and made my heart smile.
So, I am learning to not judge, but to leave my heart and spirit open to God’s amazing gifts.
If you have read this far, I thank you and hope you enjoyed. If you have had similar experiences or have any other comments I would love to hear from you.