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Outward Appearance

Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart. 1 Samuel 16:7 NIV
Today I read a blog post called Fat Haters. The author, Lyn, tells the story of how she had just lost a very wanted baby through miscarriage. Life has to go on at these times and, in her emotional agony, she went to the video store where her son put some late videos in the drop bin and returned to the car. A woman came out of the store and started yelling at her, thinking she was trying to avoid late fees, and told her to never return to the store. Lyn writes:
I want to emphasize that you NEVER KNOW what someone else is going through, or has gone through. You don't know if the person in the grocery store seems grouchy because her husband passed away last week. You don't know if someone is thoughtless because they just had cancer treatments. You don't know if someone's actions are because they just lost a child. And you don't know if that fat person is losing weight, gaining weight, has a medical problem, or is eating for comfort because their mother is dying. Try to refrain from judgements. Try to give people the benefit of the doubt. There is nothing wrong with being kind.
So true! We so quickly condemn people who look or are living in ways we think are wrong but we don't know the person's heart or their story.

Father, I confess that I have made conclusions about people without knowing their hearts and stories. I've put people some people on pedestals because of how they look and act or because of their position and others I've thought ill of for the same reasons. Forgive me, Lord, and help me to give others the benefit of the doubt.

Comments

Lyn said…
Thanks for the mention, and thank you for spreading the message of kindness :)

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About the Author

DEBBIE HAUGHLAND CHAN
WINNIPEG, MANITOBA, CANADA

I'm married (35 years in December 2008) with four grown sons. I love my city (Winnipeg) and my country (Canada) and promote them both to whoever will listen. God (through Jesus Christ) is the biggest part of my life. I am learning to let him take control of all areas--though I do better at this some times more than others.

I have written a book that's recently been published about part of my journey with God. In it I tell how God confronted me with the same-sex attraction issues I've struggled with all my adult life and how he led me through them to a deeper and more meaningful relationship with him. God is amazing—his forgiveness, his love, his movement in our lives when we allow him and so much more. I suspect God will never run out of things to teach me or ways to make me grow and that’s a good thing (though often very painful).

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Reviews of Searching for Love

If you have read the book, I would love to hear your thoughts on it. You may e-mail me at debbiehaughland@gmail.com or post them in the comments section below.

A Real Testimony
I finished your book. A real testimony to what God does for us.
Leona March 3, 2009
I Had Tears Coming

I sat down to read it about a week later and ended up finishing it the same night. At first I admit I was a little bored and thought that the whole book was about a battle all in your mind, but as I continued reading this creeping thought came over me of a different...struggle in my own life, that I would never in my right mind have shared with anyone accept maybe God. I've mentioned your book to a few people because it stirs up age-old controversies that I have myself argued and wondered about, namely about whether or not homosexuality can be cured or just managed like alcoholism--you just have to stay away from temptation. I noticed at the end of your book that your struggle story …