All that glitters is not gold. Things that we observe with our naked eyes are just false impressions, whereas the original and true content lies underneath, neatly hidden within.

It’s so easy and often seems normal to walk around passing judgement on every individual you meet; about who or what they are. Everything based on a small passing detail or perhaps a flaw that you’ve observed. Maybe they are dressed up in an unusual way or maybe their attitude appears to be rude. Either way, you don’t have the right to judge others without taking the time and effort to sit them down and get to know them; to hear what they have been or are currently going through. You might be in for a surprise!

Things are not always what they seem. Some things require you to put yourself in another person’s shoes to understand what they are going through. Then maybe you’ll understand that sleepless nights, pain, tears and headaches are all part of their lives. Maybe, just maybe, you’ll stop calling that girl names every time she goes to fetch her ARV’s at the clinic because you don’t know how she got infected, after all. Do you know that she was raped when she was only ten? Oh! And do you know that her own father was part of the gang?

So, next time you think of judging the next person, STOP and put yourself in their shoes for a moment. It is also said in the Book of Matthew: “Judge not, and you won’t be judged, for with every judgement you pronounce, you will be judged according to it.”

“Never underestimate the pain of a person, because in all honesty, everyone is struggling. Some people are just better at hiding it than others. Sometimes the outside is not always the reflection of the inside. You can find someone who has just lost a loved one wearing a smile on their face, head held high as if nothing has happened. But, on the inside, they are torn apart, praying and hoping that you notice and ask if everything is okay; for you to lend them your ear for a moment. Many individuals are like uncut diamonds, and their true qualities lie beneath a rough exterior.

So, do not be fooled by ravenous wolves dressed in sheep’s clothing. The prettiest aren’t always the friendliest or the most interesting people around. And having an unusual or unique appearance does not mean that one has an ugly heart. They might turn out to be the smartest, warmest-hearted person ever. Bear in mind that a lemon looks appealing to the eyes but you’ll only discover its sour taste after you’ve taken a bite.

Please remember that beauty is only skin deep. What matters and is essential is invisible to the eyes. So, don’t just look at the surface. Dig deeper to see what is everlasting instead of settling for something that is temporary. Don’t be shallow. Don’t be an informed fool. Don’t judge a book based on what you see or another’s opinion about it.