Outside the church we attend in downtown Charlotte are benches, and on those benches sit the homeless, mentally ill, and really poor of Charlotte. I often say to myself as I pass them by “there but for the grace of God go I.” In so doing I am wrong, for on the benches I sit in spirit as well.
There cannot be two classes in this world — The house of have and the house of have-not. There cannot be two faiths one for me and one for the people who sit on the benches. I must recognize that those I pass by are not some “poor creatures” as I have heard them called more than once. The people on those benches, the people who sleep on the steam grates of DC, or stand on a street corner of your hometown begging for food are our brothers and sisters, our flesh and blood, children of God just like you and me.
Noble sentiment Webb you might say. Noble sentiment weakened and dulled by the materialism and selfishness of this century others may blame. Noble sentiment that only can be remedied into reality by a change of looking at the world in every one of our eyes.
God asks us to open our eyes, to see the world as one community, and to paraphrase Eugene Debs — “As long as one of my brothers or sisters is imprisoned by poverty, prejudice, or neglect than I (We) are not truly free.”