Over the next few weeks we’ll be producing a blog series titled “Building Bridges Across the Generational Divide.” As you read a variety of perspectives from women from different walks of life and different generations, we hope that you’ll feel encouraged and challenged to reach out with grace, understanding, and empathy to connect with those in a different generation.
Releasing Our Preconceptions
By Linda Moore
For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart. 1 Samuel 16:7
He wasn’t someone she would normally gravitate toward to engage in conversation or invite to share a cup of coffee. He was covered with tattoos and smoked constantly, and she was certain that he had an antisocial air about him. Yet, as author Laurie Nichols writes in her article, “Walking in the Comfort of the Holy Spirit: Three Steps to Guide Us,” her eyes were opened one day when she approached her neighbor, who was hunched over a drainage hole. “What are you doing?” she asked. He looked up, and she was surprised at his concerned expression. “I am trying to get a baby chick out. A few of them were washed into this drain during the last storm. I was able to rescue one, but this one is stuck.”
Laurie was bowled over by his response! She had totally missed “the very imprint of God” in her neighbor, having previously assumed him to be non-Christian and hard-core because of his disordered and disheveled appearance. It was, in her words, a “God-inspired vision,” and all her preconceived notions of him changed in a moment.
Ponder: Are we willing to rethink our assumptions about young men and women whose lifestyle and choices appear to be at odds with what we believe? Are we willing to alter our attitude and look at these individuals as made in God’s image and loved by Him?
Prayer: Lord, we confess that we often fail to evaluate others from Your perspective. Forgive us, Lord, for letting our judgmental attitudes keep us from loving those we should be embracing with Your love and grace. Give us the humility to admit we need this change, and remind us frequently to look at others with Your inspired vision. God, be our help!
Further Resource: You can read Laurie’s whole article, “Walking in the Comfort of the Holy Spirit: Three Steps to Guide Us,” at www.wheaton.edu.
Linda Moore’s varied professional experiences as an ICU nurse, recording and concert artist, women’s ministries director, consultant, speaker, and worship leader have afforded her many opportunities to express her passion for God and His people. Linda is married to a semi-retired pastor and is the mother of three grown daughters and “Nana” to five grandchildren. She is the former Vision New England director of women’s ministries, and is the founder and executive director of by design ministries.