Don’t Jump the Gun

Mrs. Straley was fuming. She was my second grade teacher and guess who she was ticked at? Yeah, me !  It was near Valetines day and every kid in the class had a box with their name on it where the other students in the class could put Valentines cards in them.  I had misunderstood my teacher. I heard her say we were to make cards for each of the children and put them in their boxes, so I set out to do just that. I took those tablets we kids were given then and made homemade cards for ever child but Mrs. Straley concluded I was stuffing them with paper for a prank !    She was so mad she called my parents and I can still remember my Mom coming in wondering what I had done.

As I started to tell my side of things, Mrs. Straley began to realize she had jumped the gun in her judgment. Now my Mom was the one fuming, ha !  But Mom handled the situation well and I was exonerated (this time, ha) !   As I’ve told you that story I’m sure you have thought that at times you have rushed to judgment like my teacher.  We all have been guilty of this sin at one time or another (yes it is a sin) and it’s a hard pill to swallow when you are the recipient of someone who has jumped to conclusions about you.  Solomon wisely warned us, “He that answers a matter before he hears it, it is  folly and shame unto him.” (Prov.18:13).

As a child of God the Bible says one day we’ll judge angels (1Cor.6:3), so we’d better get used to being effective judges. Parents especially need to hone this skill and take great care and effort to make sure you are rendering fair evaluations of your child’s behavior and patiently gather the facts and listen to them so as not to exasperate them. They need to know you will be fair and thus in doing you open up channels of communication whereby they know they will get a fair hearing.  Church members need to not make rash conclusions simply based on past performances or fall prey to hearsay but carefully and in a Christlike way hear all sides before coming down with a decision on others in your church. Loving your neighbor means treating them how you would like to be evaluated as well.   So be a good judge not a Mrs. Straley (at least that particular Valentine’s day) !!

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