Assumptions Matter

Assumptions about others do not matter unless they are wrong. This week 16-year-old Ralph Yarl rang the doorbell and was shot twice through the front door of Andrew Lester’s house. Yarl had been asked to pick up his younger twin brothers. He was at the right house number, but on the wrong street one block over. Yarl assumed he was at the right house. Lester says he was “scared to death” and assumed he was being robbed. Yarl’s wounds were not fatal, but his life has been forever traumatized. Mr. Lester has been charged with two felonies: assault in the first degree and armed criminal action. 

This week I have been exercising, also known as walking, at Tulsa’s upscale outdoor shopping center, Utica Square. On Monday I also got my afternoon coffee. On Tuesday, Dorothy and I met for a late lunch. I also watch people and admire the spring flowers planted everywhere. I remember being at Utica Square one November many years ago. The place was filled with holiday shoppers and parking was at a premium. On my way back to my car I saw the most beautiful automobile I believe I have ever seen outside of a car show. It was a stately silver Rolls Royce adorned with highly polished silver trimmings. As it passed in front of me, I saw there was a chauffeur driving two people who were seated in the back of the car.  I made two guesses as to who was inside: a wealthy elderly couple or the Lady Dowager Duchess of old Tulsa Town herself (whoever that might be) with her personal assistant. I got in my car and drove around the block to see where the Rolls Royce took the passengers.

The chauffeur stopped at the front door of a store, but from my position I could not tell which store it was. He got out, dressed in a full charcoal and gray uniform with the hat, and opened the car’s rear door. Out stepped a dark-haired young lady dressed in stylish causal clothes. “Ah ha,” I thought, “the other will be the Duchess.”  But when the other woman stepped out of the car she looked as young and stylish as her friend. They could have been sisters, or a mother and daughter or just good friends. I discovered that they had gone into the Pottery Barn. Maybe they won the lottery and rented the Rolls Royce for the day just to impress people like me. Maybe that is how they go shopping all the time.  I just do not have enough information to know the real answer. My first assumptions were wrong.  The hard lesson is that almost every time I assume, or presume upon a person or a situation, I am wrong. Just ask my wife. 

Keep healthy. Pray mightily. Enjoy your life today. Assumptions matter. And let’s experience the love and power of God together.

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