Designer Thijs Biersteker has created a book cover that judges you back. It contains a tiny imbedded camera, face-recognition software, and small lock at the bottom. As you look at the book’s cover, it looks at you, scanning your face for signs of judgment. If you look too skeptical (or even too enthusiastic), it remains locked. If your expression is neutral, the system send an audio signal and the book unlocks itself. It’s a gentle, hi-tech reminder not to come to conclusions too quickly.
Quick To Conclude
In a lower-tech way, we encounter this situation dozens — if not hundreds — of times each day. Too often we decide in advance the meaning of each event: we can already tell you what our spouse is thinking or what our boss will say or how this situation will play itself out — and we act accordingly.
Our rush to judgment serves only to keep each cover closed, locked-up tight, eliminating the possibility that something out of the ordinary could occur.
The Challenge We Face
Do you remember when God told Samuel that he doesn’t judge as others judge?
“People judge by outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7)
Our challenge is to do the same. We need to remind ourselves that the past doesn’t always equal the present. The outside doesn’t always reveal what’s inside. Your immediate impression may not be your most accurate impression.
What if you learned to look at each circumstance — and each person along the way — with a fresh perspective, free from any pre-programmed bias? Can you imagine how just being neutral might open new doors and create new possibilities?