I don’t know if you have ever heard this phrase “Don’t Judge A Book By Its Cover” or as we learn in the Bible in 1 Samuel 16:7, But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the LORD does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”

Recently, I spoke to a wonderful group of women on the topic To Be Loved.  Following the message I was going to give Hugs of Love to every woman in attendance. Well, lunch was served before I spoke and while I was in the serving line an incident occurred directly in front of me. Two women were politely offering a place in line to a woman with a cane, who had wanted to remain seated alongside the wall by herself. This woman’s response shook me to my core as she was boisterous, filled with anger, unappreciative and said a lot of unpleasant words. At that moment I was determined not to offer her a Hug of Love because of her nasty attitude (that was my fleshly response).

Thanks to the Lord’s prompting, I proceeded towards this woman anyway after I spoke, who was filled with so much hate. During the incident and the entire meeting this woman remained seated, which appeared to be due to physical issues. BUT GOD.  As I approached this woman, that I was determined to not show God’s love to, I was met with the biggest surprise. This precious woman (yes turns out she is very precious but filled with hurt and pain from her life’s journey) stood up as I stood in front of her.  I embraced her with the Hug of Love from God and tears rolled down her face. She said to me, “Honey, you just don’t know but everything you spoke in your message, you were telling my story”.

Following this encounter, I was crushed by my own earlier thoughts and opinions of this woman. I learned a strong lesson that day – yes, she may look mean and speak harshly but, in reality, this is a facade to cover up all the hurt, pain, discouragement, heart break, feelings of worthless, no self-worth – feelings of being UNLOVED.

Lord have mercy on us and forgive us when we fail to look at One’s Heart; not their outer appearance or stature.