‘What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men …… That is what love looks like.’ - St. Augustine

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Hypocrisy Is the New Black

Warning: if you are the type that thinks every post is directed at you and also gets easily offended, move along. Although I am writing this post in direct response to a particular group of people, it applies to far too many. Most people who read my blog feel the same as I, but I know this post will bring me some grief from the easily offended. Sorry. It's my right to speak what's on my mind, and I exercise that right.

Do you consider yourself a kind and giving person? Do you attest to caring for others and wanting this world to be a better place for your children, and their children? Do you want to live in a better world?

I'm pretty sure that most people we meet would say yes to that. But how many honestly need to answer yes to these, too:

Do you buy more than you need? Do you spend money daily or even weekly on small or large luxuries to make your life easier, knowing full well that many do not even have the bare necessities? Do you buy yourself jewelry or designer something "just because"? Do you get more than you give?
Family home in rural Siberia.
Even if you don't believe in God -- imagine for one moment that there is one -- could you honestly look Him in the eye at the end of your life and tell Him you did EVERYTHING you could with the gifts and wealth He lent to you? EVERYTHING? If He made you aware of a person, or a family or a group in your neighborhood or in another part of the world, that were suffering needlessly while you vacationed and shopped and drank and ate to your heart's content, would you have an answer for Him as to why you ignored their need?
Russian teens make do after leaving the orphanage.

Our wealth is not our own. If we have while others go without and we do nothing, or simply give a little to relieve our guilt,?how can we live with ourselves If we know of even one person who suffers the humility of poverty or hunger while we stock our cabinets full to the brim, how  do we dare fool ourselves into thinking we are caring people?

Only food source for far too many people in the world.
I know this post will cull out some scathing comments from others, but I don't care. Something is pressing on my heart. Seeing the hypocrisy of so very many people lately has me feeling sick to my stomach. I can't sit back and see the hypocrisy and not speak it aloud.

Call it what you want, but if God or the world or "fate" or whatever else you wish to call it shows you another human being suffering. How can you possibly then go on your merry way, shopping and laughing and surrounding yourself with needless stuff (or even just isolating from others' needs and self-soothing) and not know that a day is coming when you will have to explain yourself.

Warning -- there is no acceptable explanation for what you are doing. Wake up. Wake up before it's too late. Behind all your laughing and shopping and whining and complaining about mundane things, there is a world of people dying. Don't say it is not your problem. It is. Don't say there is no easy answer, there is. Know of a need? Fill it. Hear of a need? Respond to it. See a need? Embrace it at once and make it your own.

We live in a world of hypocrites and self-serving wealth that is stagnating in the hands of those who have everything. Want to really give? Give until it hurts. Want to truly be part of the human race? Look someone's need and want in the face and do something about it. Feel you have a god-given right to complain about the state of things in our world? Then you better damn well have given all you can emotionally , physically and financially,  before I hear you.

My heart is heavy. The disparity is sickening. The cries of those in need is deafening. I want more people to hear their cries. I want more in a position to do something to join me in trying to FIX it. I am so grieved. I see so much sorrow and poverty and so many people turn the other way, and the world spins madly on.
Sveta, age 5, and Roma, age 4 -- Russian street children.
Taken by my cyber friend Hannah a few years ago in Moscow ( underground.)

God, my deepest prayer for this year is that you will open eyes.


  1. And I need to do more, more, more. I know it; how easy to backslide.

    When we came back from Russia last time, all I wanted to do was go back; I was sickened by our "opulent", cluttered lifestyle, which is actually pretty sub-standard compared to everyone we know. So much so that my kids who might have ended up like your "after leaving the orphanage" photo, are now ashamed to have friends over.

    I don't know what to say; you are so right.

    But, we volunteer at a food pantry, and I've noticed that on one level, even the poor here are wealthy compared to people I saw in Russia. They can stand in line and quibble about the brand of turkey we are giving them ("That's not a Butterball; I want a Butterball!") or refuse whole wheat bread ("I don't want none of that garbage!")

    My little girl was taught how to get food from the garbage. That's how she lived when her mom disappeared for days on end. What a weird world we live in.

    On the other hand, going to school side by side with those who have "everything"; seeing so MUCH in the way of consumer goods on TV. I think on one hand it is harder to be poor here; there is much less moral support and camaraderie.

    What is it about our society?

  2. I agree with everything you wrote in this blog and in others. How can I live a 'comfortable' life when my brothers and sisters are suffering? Can I change the world and make it better? No. But I can change the life of one and that will make the world better.
    Dear Lord, help me not to worry about what I will eat or wear but lead me to seek first Your kingdom and Your righteousness Amen

  3. good post...and a good reminder that we all should be doing more. You inspire me

    I work at a domestic Violence shelter and I see the good in people. I see generosity, donations, giving of time and money. I see people who think of others in need. I see it everyday. It warms my heart. We rely on the kindness of others to feed our ladies and to take care of the general running of the shelter. This Christmas the shelter Women and children were totally spoiled with items. I take calls daily of people wanting to help and give.

    I see the good in people... I see it everyday. I give of my time, work for little pay and donate. We live a simple life, drive used cars and work hard. But we are also saving for a nice vacation and I also like " stuff".

    Should people feel give more.... yes. Can I give more... yes. Should people feel guilty for personal choices ( vacation, expenses, purchases) I don't know.


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