One of the District Leaders wore a dirty tie to the meeting. I told him it looked dirty and inappropriate. He told me I would understand why he wore it later. During his adestramento he asked me what I thought about his tie, and I said it was dirty. He asked another sister and she said it looked like it needed to be cleaned. He then proceeded to tell us about the tie.
He had been a football player before coming on a mission. Whenever they played a game away from home, they were required to wear a tie. The coach had given them all a tie and he had worn that same tie to every away game. When he came on his mission, it was the only tie he had. He wore it everyday in the MTC. It was the only tie he had to bring to Italy.
That tie was very special to him. A beloved coach had given it to him and he had worn it faithfully to every game. It had gotten dirty over time, but he was required to wear a tie, and that was the only tie he had. He was demonstrating obedience by wearing it.
Needless to say, I felt bad for judging him wrongly and so did a lot of others. Sometimes we see things that seem dirty and we prejudge them as being dirty. We don’t understand the circumstances behind what we see. Instead of being judgmental, we should find out the reason and see if we can help. In this case, I could have volunteered to clean the tie or busy a new one for him.