They say you can tell a lot about a man by whether he wears boxers or briefs—underwear, that is. REALLY!?! Well, first, how exactly do we know this, short of…, er, never mind. Anyway, let’s test this most curious hypothesis. Take me, for example. I’ve written just shy of 1,000 of these articles. From your reading, can you determine whether I wear boxers or briefs? My point exactly. You cannot tell. And I’m not telling!
We categorize or judge people on the most curious criteria; British tweed, pin-stripe suit, punk, business casual, dirt-bag, unkempt hair, southern-drawl, “blonde,” the metrosexual look. It’s been said that you can’t judge a book by its cover. How much less can you know the character of a person by their jockeys?!?
We need to learn the skills of interpersonal communication again. It takes some degree of effort to truly know someone. Learn to ask questions, good questions. Not questions that will yield a clichéd response of good or fine. Not helpful. Remember, open, honest relationships always require both parties to win the right to be heard. This can happen in a night or take a lifetime. While we’re at it, we might as well learn to listen more than we talk. Two ears, one mouth. Remember?
Dare we assume a rich relationship with anyone with no effort expended to nurture it? I try to take everyone at their face-value. They may prove trustworthy: they may not. But I assume that there is always more to a person than what meets the eye on first, even second, encounter. There has to be. How do I know that? Because they reveal more of their selves as they feel safer around me. And how do they come to feel safer? Simple. I take the risk and disclose who I am to them.
So, don’t classify someone on the basis of their appearance, accent, cultural heritage, or underwear. Listen for their soul in between the lines of your exchanges, whatever the topic. Listen for their frustrations, their concerns, their passions, even their political and religious penchants. Listen for the person within the outward skin. It may surprise you.
Finally, keep in mind that God looks on the inward person, not the external persona. And He doesn’t even care if you wear underwear at all! Go commando!
Have a nice week,