Did anyone used to watch this show, “The Lifestyle of the Rich and Famous“?
Oh how I would love to be the host that show and have Robin Leach’s job! Traveling the globe to tour the homes and talk to some of these owners about their life and wealth? I’ll take it!
I have always been a dreamer. Perhaps this is why I love reading and watching movies so much. There is something about getting lost in the pages, lives and stories of the characters described.
In an ideal world, my lifestyle would consist of doing the things I love to do-reading, writing, coaching, mentoring, traveling and teaching-all while having the time to explore different things that fascinate me with the ones I love. One of those things is driving around to different areas (not afraid to get lost at all) and look at homes. It’s something about looking at the structures of buildings and the various designs all put together with a variety of styles, hues, shapes and unique additions tailored to someone’s specific taste. (This is one of the reasons I love the city of Pittsburgh so much, but knew I could never live there.)
My imagination tends to run away with me as I am admiring these homes, creating stories in my mind of who lives there, what they do for a living and what kind of conversations happen around their dinner table.
My secret hope is that one day one of the owners would see me admiring their home and welcome me in for a cold glass of lemonade. Somehow, they would read my mind and ask me if I wanted to take a tour of their home.
A bit farfetched, but a girl can dream right?
Well, in an effort to get to know my new neighborhood after recently relocating to Houston, I decided to take a drive last Friday evening after finishing work. I wasn’t feeling well. I quickly forgot about that as I let my car windows down, relishing in the evening sun and warm breeze after being cooped up in the house all day sitting in front of a computer.
One turn down a road and the aches in my body slowly faded into the background as I found myself in a beautiful subdivision filled with huge homes.
I am talking humongous, gigantic, like “what in the world do they do and how I can I get in on that” type homes.
A lot like the homes you would see on the show The Rich and the Famous.
It literally held me in a daze.
Yes, I admit my mouth was open.
And then I was jarred awake and pulled back to reality…
Well another reality.
Because probably less than 3 miles down the road, in another community, there was another reality that hit me.
And it got real.
I had to pull over to collect myself as the images gripped my heart.
My eyes quickly filled with tears and began to spill over freely.
As I saw this…
I was in the same area-a very wealthy neighborhood I might add-that had a shopping center down the street filled with high end stores.
How could this be Lord?
And I wondered how could people just drive by, see this and not stop.
There are so many reasons. Perhaps they had seen it so many times and had become immune.
Or maybe, they were rushing home to their own “lifestyle” of brokenness that began (or worsened) after Hurricane Harvey hit Texas, whether it was physical, emotional or financial.
I wept for the owners of these items, scattered out on the sidewalk and all throughout the community for the world to see.
Some who were now left with shattered pieces of their life to pick up, make sense of and attempt to put back together again.
And while I prayed a quick prayer for them, I later remembered those in the homes I had just seen a few days before.
I was only able to see a glimpse from the outside of what I assumed was their rich lifestyle.
I didn’t know what was happening behind closed doors or what brokenness they, too, might be facing.
In that moment, I asked the Lord to please not let me be like that.
Where I miss seeing people and/or their circumstances especially when it isn’t so obvious.
There have been too many times that I have passed people or situations in my rush to get where I am going and completely turn a blind eye.
It’s not something I am proud of.
Truthfully, I miss many opportunities to really see people.
Beyond the outside.
Beyond what is presented.
Beyond what I can see in the natural.
Beyond their seemingly rich lifestyle and into their brokenness.
Which means I miss opportunities to send up a quick prayer for them, to offer a kind word, even a smile or a helping hand.
Yet, that day I saw both realities.
The lifestyle of the rich…and the broken.
And that the roles may be reversed where those who had pieces of their lives scattered across sidewalks may very well be the ones that are rich and those living in beautiful homes are the broken ones.
Only God knows.
Which is why He allowed me to see this after the devastation I had seen:
Now my prayer is:
Lord give me eyes to see Your creation and Your people beyond what my natural eyes can see.
Beyond the lifestyle of the rich and broken and simply as Yours.
Let me truly see them through Your eyes.
And let me respond as You would.
Scripture references: The Holy Bible (several translations)
Photo credit: IMGflip.com, CJP Iphone 7, Wordswag by CJP, Youtube
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