In 1st Samuel 16:7 the Bible says, “The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” Because of our limited depth of perception, one of the biggest mistakes people make is to judge others by their outward appearance.
I’ve met people who were well dressed that came across as respectable and even possibly affluent. Later I would discover they were morally and spiritually corrupt, as well as financially bankrupt. Looks can be deceiving and if you were to cast judgment based merely on outward appearance you would often find your assessments incorrect.
Conversely, just because a person may dress stylish or happen to like fashion does not make them spiritually shallow as many Pharisee types would like to think. Truthfully, you can never see what a person carries in their heart based on one’s dress code or outward physical appearance. The power to accurately discern what’s in one’s heart is reserved for God alone.
I have met people who dressed with a great style that were among the most sincere, generous and God loving people I have ever met. Remember, ones sense of fashion cannot be the criteria you use to judge whether a person is righteous or not. Only their deeds can do that.
Outward appearance has absolutely nothing to do with the intimacy of one’s walk with God. Nor can it determine what kind of person they are. These things are based on something much deeper that cannot be accurately discerned with the all too fallible human eye.
The next time you see someone who is dressed well don’t be so quick to pass judgment one way or another. By the same token, the next time you see someone poorly dressed or groomed, don’t assume you know anything about them. Some of the wealthiest philanthropists in the world have been known to dress down and look totally unassuming. They purposely appear low key.
Have people misjudged you in one-way or another? I know every time I have been misjudged by my outer appearance it has caused me deep pain inside. People are often wrong about us and we’re equally wrong about them.
Remember, there is no dress code that makes one person more holy than the next. However we decide to dress ourselves, we should clothe ourselves inwardly with the love of God. Let the Holy Spirit do its job, which is to convict people of their sin, and let Christ be the judge because only he can judge accurately and fairly. We only need to walk in love and make it a point to give people a chance to show us what’s inside of them before we pronounce our judgments. In the same way we cannot tell how tasty an orange is by it’s peel, neither can judge the fruit of someone’s life until we examine it from within.