Have you watched the YouTube video of Susan Boyle, the 47-year-old British Idol contestant?
If you haven’t, you should.
Susan is kind of a frumpy middle-aged gal with bushy eye brows and not much style, but with a bright and charming personality.
When she takes the stage to audition, she tells the judges that she wants to be a professional singer. The judges raise their eye brows and make faces and steal not-so-secret glances at one another that all but say, “You? What a joke!”
The camera pans the audience and catches a young gal who has crafted the perfect expression of scornful amusement (no doubt with much practice) that makes me want to slap her. Except I’m sorta feeling the same thing.
But all of this is lost on Susan, or at least she shows no evidence that she notices or cares. In her frumpy church dress and her white shoes, bad hair and ample eye brows, she stands before the judges with cheerful confidence.
And then she opens her mouth to sing and out comes the voice of angels, sophisticated lyrical phrasing and perfect pitch. The inside does not match the outside. The judges are blown away. The audience is blown away. Everyone goes wild and leaps to their feet to cheer her. No one had any idea.
When she is finished, she cheerfully leaves the stage expecting nothing more whereas I would have maybe hollered something like, “So there! Take that you fill-in-the-blanks!!” And then blown raspberries to punctuate my point.
This video sends shivers down my spine. Not only because of Susan’s amazingly beautiful voice that pierces my heart but because I think of how often I make judgments about people by what I see on the outside and how often I am wrong and how often I must be missing out on something wonderful because I have already dismissed them with scornful amusement.
Susan had good reason to stand before the judges with confidence. She knew what was inside of her. She knew.
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“…Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
1st Samuel 16:7