What color is the blood inside your body? Is it red? There’s a good chance it is, or at least I hope it is. You might want to check that out if your blood is not the color red!
In other words, we human beings are all equal. No one is better than anyone else. I’m not better than you and you’re not better than me. We are all the same on the inside. God created us in His image. The only thing that distinguishes us from one another is the way we look – the color of our hair, eyes, skin, or how tall we are.
Unfortunately, most of us do not always see what is on the inside. We judge others on what we can visibly see and/or know. The first ten seconds when meeting someone you are already judging them, based on their appearance. Before a word is even spoken, a judgment is already occurring. “Don’t ever judge a book by its cover” should apply to people also. Don’t ever judge a person before getting to know them.
I’ll be honest with you. I struggle with judging people. I’ve gotten tremendously better since coming to prison, but this is still one of my weaknesses. There are so many different types of people in this place. I seem to congregate towards the inmates who are more like me and have the same likes and dislikes, as most people do wherever you are. But in this small 1800 person community, I have become open-minded to the many other groups that take place in this prison. And it has led me to realize that we are all the same on the inside. Oh, our minds and attitudes are different; the issues of our hearts are different. But our bodies on the inside were all created the same.
Believe it or not, there are a lot of good decent people in prison. Yes, I know it says in the Bible that no one is good, not even one. However, there are inmates who are truly sorry for what they did and are doing everything they can to change and better their lives. I know I’m one of them. One day these “good” people will be free, living out in the community like a normal person with one difference. These people will have the title murderer, sex offender, or drug dealer hanging over their heads. They will be like sheep thrown into a pack of wolves, just waiting to get torn apart, mocked, or ridiculed because they are a felon. I will be included among this group.
Yes, you will judge us because of what you’ve heard about us. Some of us are not the same people before coming to prison. They have changed and want to have a normal life again. It will be hard because you will judge us. You might know a felon who lives in your neighborhood or even right next to you. I encourage you to take the time to get to know that person and help them become productive members of society again. Who knows? By helping them and being kind to them they will see Jesus in you and come to know Him better. Jesus says, “Whatever you did to the least of these, you also did to Me. Do not judge or you will be judged.”
Be open-minded. Take that initiative and be that example to let your light shine. After all, this is God’s command….to love one another. Love me, but please don’t judge me.