I grew up in what would have been considered, at least here in America, middle class, though really compared to the rest of the world I was rich for I had a roof over my head, three hot meals a day - and more if I wanted it, clean drinking water, transportation, a comfy bed, running water, clean clothes and even toys I didn't need. I had that and to top it all off I had a family who loved me.
It's easy to grow up with all that and forget that there are people just like you who didn't grow up like you did, having all you needed. I didn't chose to be born in the family I was born into, I could have just as easily been born in a third world country with nothing. I could've been born to a family who didn't love me ... things could've been so different. I had no right to be prideful, arrogant or snobby to others less fortunate than me. I had no right turning my nose up to those who haven't had the opportunities I've had.
Spending time with the homeless has made me realize that life is fragile and that which I have can be gone in a flash ... if not for the grace of God there go I! Also spending time with a friend of mine in his 8th year of a 10 year prison sentence has impacted me; once making a six figure income, owning a big house in an affluent community, driving a nice expensive car -- now behind bars -- all has been taken from him. Most people have abandoned him, but God hasn't!
I guess I was just thinking today that each of us could be that guy in the picture with me -- homeless, broken, addicted! And let's not be stuck-up, snobby-types and love all people! FYI, the first step in loving people is helping them if they need it, and acknowledging them -- saying "hi" rather then ignoring them!
1 John 3:18 “Little children, let us stop just saying we love people; let us really love them, and show it by our actions.”