This blog post is follow up from my previous post entitled “When you see men fall, don’t laugh…”
If you didn’t catch that one, jet over to that post and review it prior to this one so that you can have clarity on what I am speaking of.
I’m going to be honest with you guys. During this pandemic, I have noticed a lot of shady activity! I’m not sure if my pregnancy is opening up all of my senses so that I can see everyone and everything clearly or if this pandemic has just created an opportunity for all of our skeletons to be exposed to us so that we can heal it. Maybe it’s a little bit of both! But what I can say is, sometimes our self-righteousness can get the best of us and we can begin judging people or comparing our lives against those who are choosing desperation over faith.
I had to take a social break for a minute from online platforms and in-person interactions, because I became disappointed with humanity. I really did. I got tired of seeing PPP loan scams or people behaving fraudulently in order to Re-up on cash.
Like Farrakhan said, “When you see men fall, don’t laugh.” I didn’t laugh until I saw the Leave the Door Open Parody.
As I’ve stated before, African-Americans have an interesting way of laughing at our own pain in order to cope with struggles. Although this parody is extremely comical, laughing at others for committing fraud is really just another way of judging someone in a self-righteous manner.
I had to realize that just because I personally wouldn’t commit fraud, that doesn’t mean that someone who does choose this method of attaining money is disgusting, evil, stupid, or crazy.
I can remember times when I had sticky fingers as a child and as a teenager! And I may not have gotten caught to where I had to serve time in jail for it, but I most definitely paid for it in other ways. I would always get speeding tickets or have expensive car repairs. My unrepentant sinful debt had to be repaid and I really didn’t learn the discipline required for my growth until I enlisted in the military at 19.
A few things I had to realize in order for me to stop judging people who chose to steal in their adulthood is:
- We all have different upbringings. Some of us were raised in low-income environments.
- We all have different circumstances.
- We mature differently. Age is not a factor in growth. Growth is a product of learned lessons.
With those things put into perspective, it is not my place to judge when someone should learn a lesson. Our individual challenges are for us to sort through.
I cannot fairly judge the actions of someone who was reared in an impoverished neighborhood. My idea of stealing may be that someone is lazy and taking the easy way out. Their idea of stealing may be for survival. Maybe that mother lost her job due to the pandemic, because she couldn’t afford childcare when the schools closed. She was caught in a rough place where she had to choose her job over her child. So she chose her child and decided to apply for the loan with altered information, but she had all intentions of paying the loan back.
Or maybe that man applied for a PPP loan so that he could continue to feed his family. Maybe he lost his wife due to complications from an illness during the pandemic and really needed assistance, but couldn’t get approved for unemployment or other government assistance because his income showed that he made just above the poverty level.
There are so many unique circumstances that we all face at some point in our life.
I have found myself speaking an affirmation of gratitude each time I feel myself getting ready to judge someone for their choices. I say..
Offer compassion, patience, and understanding with others and their journey and the same energy will be returned to you when you need it. Reroute that thought of judgment to a prayer for that person and speak words of benediction over their life instead.
Ask for help in the areas YOU may need help with. Just because your vice may not be stealing or presenting false information to get approved for a loan, that doesn’t mean you are blameless and have zero discrepancies in your book. If you place that same microscope over your own life, I’m sure there is some healing that you could work on to make you a better person in an area that you have been neglecting.
I will leave you with this..