I remember hanging out with some people, and I found myself judging them in my heart. They were different from me, I thought they were awkward, and I didn’t agree with some of the choices they were making.
Judging other people is a bad deal. When you judge someone, you create distance from that person. You put yourself on an artificial pedestal of your own creation, and you look down on them. Here are 3 reasons why judging other people is a bad habit to get into:
- Judging other people is based on a false view of humanity. Judging others creates a hierarchy, so to even think about judging someone, you have to believe that some people are more important or valuable than others. This just isn’t the case. The Bible says that all people are created in the image of God, and have deep value. The person you judge is just as valuable and important to God as you are—no more and no less.
- Judging other people is based on incomplete information. When you judge someone, you are saying that they should be doing something different or making different life choices. Often you think that the person should do something more like you. But you don’t know everything about this person, in the way God does. Your information about this person is limited. You don’t know their background, family history, or genetic makeup. They might be doing the best they can given their history and circumstances. If you were in their situation, you might be doing the exact same thing (or even worse).
- Judging other people hurts connection. I believe that we can learn and grow from every interaction that we have. I love the quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson—“Every man I meet is my master in some point, and in that I learn of him.” When you judge someone, you create separation and disconnection from that person. When you judge someone, you lose any chance of learning or growing as a result of your interaction. In this way, you only hurt yourself.
Make it a rule not to judge the other people in your life. When you sense a judgment stirring up inside you, make a course correction. Instead of separating from that person, move toward that person in humility. Try to make a connection with that person. Ask them a question about their life. Work to put yourself in that person’s shoes and understand where they are coming from.