“I’m headed to the grocery store,” I shouted to my husband, “I think I’ll go topless today. “
“Great idea,” he replied, “I would join you if I didn’t have to mow the lawn.”
I grinned as I walked out the door; I knew going anywhere topless was a favorite for my husband. Throwing my handbag onto the passenger seat, I put on my favorite sunglasses and applied sunscreen in anticipation of my topless drive.
Seated in the driver’s seat, the top was removed, the parking brake disengaged and the shift stick positioned into first gear. I was ready to rock some tunes in the open air with no barriers between me and the warm sunshine; every pore of my body was tantalized by the freedom of going topless.
I circled the grocery store parking lot and found a spot near the entrance. As I exited the car, an older gentleman called out, “You might want to pull up the top, you know…just in case.”
“In case of what,” I queried, it’s a beautiful day to be topless. I clicked the remote to lock the car, grabbed a shopping cart and entered the store.
With grocery bags loaded in the trunk and still feeling adventurous, I entered the freeway for a short, topless joy ride home. My husband greeted me in the driveway to help carry in the groceries.
“How was the topless drive?” he asked as he pulled up the convertible top of our roadster. “Invigorating, as usual,” I replied. We clasped hands, brushed lips and walked into the house knowing that ‘going topless’ was a private joke between us. Eyebrows are raised and intrigue ignited whenever we speak of our topless driving excursions and the sense of freedom we experience each time we drop our top.
To my husband and I, the expression ‘going topless’ is our way of saying we are going to take our BMW roadster for a drive with the rag top down. Of course, there are those who perceive our conversation in a much different way.
In the New Testament, the Pharisees are a good example of how others can seek to misinterpret the true meaning of our words. The Pharisees listened to Jesus, but not without preconceived ideas about the message He conveyed. Ruled by human nature, they twisted His Words to fit their agenda and cause.
When human nature rules, we stand ready to discredit and fault anyone or anything that opposes our mindset. On the other hand, when ruled by our spiritual nature, we seek to comprehend, understand, and accept others in the same way Christ accepts us; we forgo assumptions.
The next time you are privy to a conversation, a sermon, or directives you don’t quite understand, I invite you to step back and listen with the heart. Digest the words spoken without judgment; you might be surprised at how wrong you are in your assumptions; I speak from experience.
“Be honest in your judgment and do not decide at a glance (superficially and by appearances); but judge fairly and righteously.” John 7:24 AMP