I just walked past a fairly young man who once held an influential position of great authority. He was falsely accused of a heinous crime and by the time he was proven innocent, he had given up on his life. He’s dressed in rags, depends on his mother to get him around, and lives the life of a pauper with a criminal record he wouldn’t have had otherwise.
I greeted him, in a feeble attempt to boost his spirits through acknowledgment.
He was standing next to a man whose wife is so depressed, she’s become completely physically disabled. Their sons have rebelled against them and act out in inappropriate ways, because of something that’s none of their fault.
In this place I often used to see a man whose mental disabilities made him an easy target and prey for his deceiving family, who took total advantage of him. He was kept in depravity and squalor until someone intervened and lifted him up; helped him out. Shortly thereafter he was injured in a horrific automobile accident and will spend the rest of his life in a vegetative state.
And as I left, I looked at the hateful lady behind the counter who just looked like she needed a good rest and a hug.
All of these people in one place at one time.
If these are the stories and circumstances gathered in one snapshot in time and space, how many others are there, just like them?
I think of everyone else I know.
The man whose job was taken away due to global company mismanagement at the top.
The girl who abuses herself emotionally because of her faith.
The man who completely lost his faith.
The woman whose young husband died of a brain tumor.
The boy who took his own life because he was gay and no one accepted him.
I think about the little girl I saw in a shopping cart the other day. Maybe two years old. Dirty and dressed in shabby clothes. Matted hair and sad eyes. She was tired and defeated. At two years old. She already knew what she had to look forward to.
There are so many more. How many do you know?
Many of these things, beyond anyone’s control. The things that were within someone’s control were handled so poorly; at the expense of another human being. How can people do that to another person?
And I just keep thinking to myself, “Why does life have to be so hard?”